Charge sheet against 23 in Orissa mining scam

Last Updated: Saturday, December 4, 2010 - 18:09

Bhubaneswar: The vigilance department has
filed a charge sheet against two mine owners and 21 others in
the multi-crore Orissa mining scam, police said Saturday.

The 23 persons were accused of misappropriating Rs 1,063
crore from several mines in mineral-rich Keonjhar district,
they said.

We have filed a charge sheet yesterday against 23
persons, including mine owners Indrani Patnaik and Das
Mohapatra, SP (vigilance) D Patnaik said.

While Indrani was alloted an iron ore and manganese mine
at Unchabali in Keonjhar district, Mohapatra owned a manganese
mine at Katasahi-Kolha-Rudkela area in the same district.

Some government officials were also named in the charge
sheet, he said.

Meanwhile, neither Indrani nor Mohapatra Patnaik was
available for comment.

Chief minister Naveen Patnaik had handed over the probe
into the illegal mining activities, which came to light in
August 2009, to the vigilance department following a demand by
the Opposition Congress and BJP for a CBI probe.

According to the charge sheet, seven persons, including
Indrani, were allegedly involved in illegal mining activities
at Unchabali iron and manganese mines in Keonjhar.

The anti-corruption wing also claimed that Rs 1,009 crore
had been misappropriated by them by illegally extracting
minerals.

Indrani, who shares a close relation with a local Congress
leader, was incidentally among the top income tax payers last
year when she had paid Rs 6 crore as income tax, officials
said.

The vigilance also filed another charge sheet against 16
persons of RBT company, including two of its directors, that
was also accused of looting mineral resources worth Rs 54
crore, the vigilance SP said.

The two directors of RBT were identified as Virendra
Mohan Sharma and Manish Mohan Sharma. Charge sheet was also
filed against RBT representative Shakti Ranjan Dash.

Some government officials were earlier arrested for their
involvement in the mining scam.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, December 4, 2010 - 18:09

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