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CBI asks Cong MP Jindal to join its probe

June 12, 2013 20:57 IST

Central Bureau Investigation has asked Congress MP Naveen Jindal, who is currently abroad with his family, to join its probe in the allocation of a coal block to his company Jindal Steel and Power Limited.

During yesterday's searches, CBI was unable to complete its operation at Jindal's 6-Prithviraj Road residence here as some of the cupboards and almirahs were in a locked condition and that they could only be unlocked by Jindal who was not in the country.

CBI sources said today that the search team had no option but to seal these cupboards and wait for the return of Jindal.

They said Jindal along with former Minister of State for Coal D Narayan Rao were booked for alleged cheating and graft in the latest FIR registered by the agency.

The sources said the agency has communicated to Jindal to join the probe as soon as possible since opening of cupboards was possible only after his return.

The sources said JSPL and Gagan Sponge Iron Limited, also a firm belonging to Jindal, had bagged Amarkonda Murgadangal coal block in Birbhum in Jharkhand in 2008 by alleged misrepresentation of facts when Rao was the Minister of State for Coal.

Within a year, a block was allocated to JSPL in January 2008, CBI sources claimed, noting that shares of Rao's firm Saubhagya Media listed at Rs 28 that time were purchased by one of Jindal's firm New Delhi Exim Limited at a whopping Rs 100 per share with total investment of nearly Rs 2.25 crore which is alleged to be illegal gratification.

Reacting to the development, Head of External Affairs, JSPL Manu Kapoor had said, "JSPL, as a law abiding company, is governed by a strong ethical code of conduct. This is an ongoing CBI investigation into coal block allocation. At this stage of investigation, JSPL is committed to fully cooperate with CBI."

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