Ore use: Railways fines Rashmi Metaliks Rs 600 cr | business | Hindustan Times
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Ore use: Railways fines Rashmi Metaliks Rs 600 cr

Indian Railways has slapped a fine of Rs 660 crore on the West Bengal-based Rashmi Metaliks on charges that it fraudulently transported 18 lakh tonnes of iron ore under concessional freight rates of railways meant only for domestic consumption of the ore. Vivek Sinha reports.

business Updated: Oct 06, 2011 21:15 IST
Vivek Sinha

Indian Railways has slapped a fine of Rs 660 crore on the West Bengal-based Rashmi Metaliks on charges that it fraudulently transported 18 lakh tonnes of iron ore under concessional freight rates of railways meant only for domestic consumption of the ore. The company exported the said quantum from the Haldia port, thus duping railways of its genuine freight charges.

The railways freight for export-bound iron ore is substantially higher than that levied on ore intended for domestic steel production. The fine has been imposed by South Eastern Railway, Chakradharpur Division through its notice dated August 16, 2011 (copy available with Hindustan Times).

Rashmi Metaliks is part of the Rs 3,000 crore Rashmi Group that produces steel and cement.

Repeated attempts to contact the Rashmi Group and Rashmi Metaliks did not elicit any response. E-mails, phone calls and messages sent on the issue went unanswered.

The notice sent by South Eastern Railway said that between May 2008 and March 2010 Rashmi Metaliks transported around 18 lakh tonnes of iron ore citing "domestic consumption" at the company's manufacturing unit located at Gokulpur in West Bengal.

"Notwithstanding your declaration….. information collected from other departments such as central excise, department of commercial taxes and your own statement of accounts this office has detected that the said iron ore … had neither been used for domestic consumption nor reflected in additional accretion of inventory in your plant," the South Eastern Railway said in its notice. The notice further alleges that this iron ore was exported by the company from the Haldia port.

The railway administration after calculating the freight evasion by Rashmi Metaliks notified it to deposit Rs 660 crore.