Monday, October 17, 2011
Coal Mine scam of Manmohan Singh
Coal Mine scam of Manmohan Singh
Another scam from UPA stable. This happened right under the nose of honest PM Manmohan Singh who is not weak or lameduck. Maybe again someone misled him, but the enormity of the corruption surpasses the 2G scam.
In this scam coal blocks to the tune of proven reserves of 21.69 billion tons was given away free to private companies and also middlemen.
This is the tale of 2006-2007 when Shibu Soren was in jail and the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was holding the coal ministry. In this period Dasi Narayan and Santosh Bagdodiya were ministers of state for coal. It was under the Prime minister that the coal ministry gave out the maximum number of captive coal blocks free of cost. The most glaring and blatant fact is that the coal mines were given out free at the lower than nominal cost of Rs. 100 royalty per ton of coal that would be extracted. It was done at a time when the market price of coal was over Rs. 2000 per ton.
Thus, in this period coal blocks to the tune of proven reserves of 21.69 billion tons was given away free to private companies and also middlemen.
The Prime minister Manmohan Singh was the coal minister during this period and all this bungling and embezzlement happened under his very nose, maximum number of blocks were squandered under him only. Manmohan Singh gave away 63 blocks for free. But why did he do so? During these four years (2006-2010) almost 175 blocks were gifted to brokers and capitalists of different shades.
From 1993 to 2010 208 blocks of coal were alloctaed for free. This tantamounts to coal reserves of 49.07 billion tons. Out of the 208 blocks 113 blocks were given to 184 private companies for free. This amounted to coal reserves equal to 21.69 billion tons. If the value of this coal is calculated at the market price of Rs. 2500 per ton, it comes out to 5,382,830.50 Crores. If out of this Rs. 2500, Rs. 1250 is deduced giving space for Rs. 850 as cost of production, transportation etc and Rs. 400 is deduced as profit, then also the country was inflicted a revenue loss of about Rs. 26 Lakh Crores. So this is the ‘Father and Mother of all Scams’. This is surely India’s biggest and scariest scam ever as also perhaps, the biggest ever in any country in the world.
The UPA government squandered the mineral resources of the nation to which all 120 Crore citizens have an equal right. The breath-bating sum of 26 Lakh Crores could have been used for the multitude of deprived and marginalized of this country.
Latter is the job of Sri Prakash Jaiswal who made no amends whatsoever. Till 2003 40 blocks had been allocated. Out of this only 24 have started production. So why have the licenses of the rest of the 16 companies not cancelled? In 2004: 4 blocks were allotted and none has started production. Similarly, in 2005: 22 blcoks were allotted and only 2 have started production. In 2006: 52, 2007: 51, 2008: 22, 2009: 16 and in 2010 0ne block was allotted. But the report till 18th January says that none have started production. So first the government allots coal blocks to private interests. Then keep the Mines and Minerals Act pending in the Parliament, while the embezzlement keeps going on, then when mines allocated to middlemen does not start production (they were not meant to start production at all) then nobody cancels their licenses. Now none needs to be a rocket scientist to see behind the official maze and fathom what went on between the government and middlemen. Had there been no covert collusion and nexus, only 26 out of 208 mines would not be producing.
It is not so that the presence of middlemen in this process is a matter of conjecture; actually a company in Maharashtra which has nothing to do with coal was allotted a free coal block which it sold for Rs. 500 Crores. Pure and simple profit without investing a penny. So the coal blocks were turned into Dalal Street wherein coal was bought and sold like shares with no accruing benefits to the people of India.
BJP has demanded investigation as of July 2011, more to be seen.