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Coal-gate scam: CBI shortlists 500 phone calls for scrutiny

May 10, 2013 17:20 IST

The Central Bureau of Investigation has identified for closer scrutiny 500 phone calls from out of the 1,000 intercepted calls mainly among the four arrested accused in the  alleged Rs 10 crore Railway bribery scandal.

As the scandal put a big question mark on the future of Railway Minister P K Bansal, CBI sources said on Friday that over 1,000 phone calls were intercepted during the two-month long surveillance on arrested member of Railway Board Mahesh Kumar and Bansal's nephew Vijay Singla.

The sources said these calls were among four key players in the scandal--Kumar, Singla and middlemen Manjunath and Sandeep Goyal.

The sources said a discussion on the transfer of the Railway Board member in specific terms could not be traced so far in the intercepts of direct phone calls between Singla and Kumar.

However, there were calls in which Singla is purported to be assuring Kumar that the work would be done. Kumar was allegedly assured that he will get the lucrative post of member (electrical) in exchange for "pecuniary gratification."

The sources said the analysis of the telephonic conversation showed that the four key players were frequently calling each other on May 3, the day when Kumar was arrested by CBI sleuths in Mumbai.

They said another important aspect which is under probe is how the bribe money was brought to Chandigarh from Bangalore.     

According to preliminary investigation, the money was not physically brought from Bangalore but through Hawala route and Manjunath allegedly used his contacts in Delhi to manage money and got it delivered to Singla in Chandigarh, they said.

The sources said Kumar met Bansal at least four times before May 3 and one of these meetings took place on the sidelines of a function on April 16.

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