Raipur: Chhattisgarh Congress on Monday alleged that the Raman Singh government allocated a coal block to BJP MP Ajay Sancheti`s firm even though it did not fulfil the criteria for conducting commercial mining.
"Raman Singh government`s decision to allocate the Bhatgaon-II extension under Shankarpur coal block to SMS Infrastructure of Sancheti brothers has resulted into the loss of Rs 8,000 crore to the Chhattisgarh Mineral Development Corporation", state unit Congress president Nand Kumar Patel said.
The Centre in July 2007 allocated the Shankarpur coal block comprising Bhatgaon-II and Bhatgaon-II Extension to the Chhattisgarh Mineral Development Corp Ltd.
"Why did the CMDC did not undertake excavation (of coal) itself? On what basis did the CMDC award the mines developing works to Sancheti brothers` firm which has no experience in this regard and is merely a land developing and civil contracting firm?", Patel said.
Incidentally, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) in its audit report (Civil &commercial) for 2010-11 had in April pulled up the CMDC for accepting a single bid for commercial mining of coal from the block allocated by the Centre.
The CAG pegged the loss caused due to allocation of coal blocks at "abnormally low" rates at over Rs 1,052 crore.
According to CAG, the Bhatgaon-II Extension Block contained superior grade coal which is "scarce and highly priced".
Patel also alleged that Raman Singh government was creating "confusion" in minds of people by making public the simple procedure of allocation of coal blocks.
"The scrutiny of the applications seeking allocation of coal blocks is done by representative of the state government. It`s the duty of the state government to conduct a due diligence on eligibility of applicants," he added.