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Javadekar, Hansraj Ahir asked to respond in coal scam case

A special court on Tuesday issued notices to Union ministers Prakash Javadekar and Hansraj Ahir asking them if they want to submit anything on CBI’s closure report filed in a coal scam case allegedly involving Prakash Industries Ltd (PIL) and others.

The court’s order came after Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) Director Sanjay Agarwal informed it that CVC was not a complainant in the matter and has no role to play in the case and it was these two leaders on whose complaint the commission had started its proceedings.

“As before accepting a closure report filed by the investigating agency, the court is duty bound to issue notice to the complainant, so I am of the considered opinion that a notice is required to be issued to the two complainants namely Prakash Javadekar and Hansraj Ahir,” Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar said.

“However, as the said two persons are now members of Council of Ministers, Government of India, so it is directed that a notice may be issued to them to the effect that a closure report in the present matter has been filed by CBI and if they wish to submit anything before the Court they may do so either in person or through their representative and submissions, if any, may be either oral or in writing,” the court said.

While Javadekar is presently the union Minister of State for Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Ahir is Minister of State in the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers. The court, however, clarified that Javadekar and Ahir need not appear in person to make any submission unless they desire to do so themselves.

The case has now been fixed for consideration on April 18, 2016.

The court had earlier directed CVC to clarify its stand on CBI’s closure report in the case in which an FIR was lodged on the basis of CVC’s reference.

An FIR was registered against PIL and others in connection with alleged irregularities in allocation of Chhattisgarh’s Fatehpur coal block.
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