A special CBI court in Delhi on Monday sentenced former Union minister Dilip Ray to three years in jail and fined him Rs 10 lakh for his role in the illegal allocation of Jharkhand’s Brahmadiha coal block to a Bokaro-based company in 1999.
The ex-junior coal minister in the Vajpayee government had been convicted of criminal conspiracy, cheating, corruption and breach of trust on October 6 along with two former coal ministry officials — Pradip Kumar Banerjee and Nitya Nand Gautam. The beneficiary firm Castron Technologies Ltd (CTL), its director Mahendra Kumar Agarwalla and another company called Castron Mining Ltd were also guilty of multiple offences, including theft.
Mahendra Kumar Agarwalla, director of Castron Technologies Ltd, was given a three-year jail term and fined Rs 60 lakh. Banerjee and Gautam were sentenced to three years in jail and fined Rs 2 lakh each.
“The average loss from ordinary crimes like burglaries and robberies may run into a few thousand rupees only, but white-collar crimes may cause losses not only in lakhs but in crores of rupees” special CBI judge Bharat Parashar said. The CBI, through public prosecutor AP Singh and advocate Tarannum Cheema, had sought “no leniency” as the accused had been convicted for economic offences.