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Economy Aug 27, 2012

‘Forget 35, not even 0.35 coal blocks were allocated in UPA-II’

Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said no coal block was given away during his tenure and only allotment letters were issued to some firms to whom coal mines were allocated in the first term of the UPA government.

"I have said time and again that except the coal block allocations made in UPA-I, no allocations have been made. If any Member of Parliament is making any such statement, then that MP is misleading the media as well as the nation," he said.

In a hurriedly called press conference, Jaiswal also refuted BJP MP Hansraj Ahir reported allegations that he sanctioned coal blocks to three private companies-SKS Ispat and Power, CGSponge Manufacturers Consortium Coalfield and API Ispat and Powertech.

Reuters

"Only two coal blocks were there, whose names have been mentioned. They were already approved (in UPA-I), but allocation letter was not issued because general elections were declared. Those allocation letters got issued when UPA-II came in to the power," he said.

"Forget 35 blocks, not even 0.35 coal blocks were allocated in UPA-II. You can come to our office and find it out, there is no basis (of the allegations)," he said.

Ahir has reportedly alleged that Jaiswal sanctioned the allocations to three private firms in late 2011 without following the auction route despite the fact that rules for auctioning had come into effect in 2010.

Jaiswal also requested the opposition parties, particularly BJP, to allow Parliament to function after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh making a statement.

PTI

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