Coalgate scam: CBI, Centre at loggerheads over probe findings
Mar 12 2013 , New Delhi
In a status report filed by CBI in the scam, the agency said that the coal block allocation during 2006-09 was done without verifying the credentials of companies which allegedly misrepresented facts about themselves.
A three-judge bench headed by Justice R M Lodha, which went through the report filed in a sealed cover, said that the report prima facie alleges irregularities, but the Attorney General G E Vahanvati aggressively hit back on the finding saying, "CBI is not the final word on this".
Vahanvati, however, clarified that the Government has no problem with CBI probe and pleaded the court to supply him with some part of the probe report on which he would respond.
"I am not trying to pre-empt the inquiry. I have no problem with it. Let CBI probe the allocation," the AG said.
The bench said the government should make a statement cautiously as it might affect the ongoing CBI probe in the case.
"Any of your comments must not prejudice CBI inquiry in the case. If you are challenging the very conspiracy angle of the controversy, then it would affect the probe," the bench, also comprising justices J Chelameswar and Madan B Lokur, said.
The bench further directed the government to explain why a small group of companies have been "picked and chosen" for allocation of coal blocks out of the large number of companies that applied for it.
The court also asked the CBI Director to file an affidavit that the status report submitted by the agency on March 8 was "vetted by him and not shared with political executives" and the same will be followed in future.