Rajasthan CM Raje cancels 601 mine allotments after alleged scam | jaipur | Hindustan Times
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Rajasthan CM Raje cancels 601 mine allotments after alleged scam

The Rajasthan government has revoked 601 mine allotments and applications which were part of an alleged multi-crore bribery scam and simultaneously handed over the probe to Lokayukta, an official communique said.

jaipur Updated: Oct 19, 2015 14:41 IST
HT Correspondent
The Rajasthan government has revoked 601 mine allotments and applications because of an alleged multi-crore bribery scam.
The Rajasthan government has revoked 601 mine allotments and applications because of an alleged multi-crore bribery scam.(HT File Photo)

The Rajasthan government has revoked 601 mine allotments and applications which were part of an alleged multi-crore bribery scam and simultaneously handed over the probe to Lokayukta, an official communique said.

The government’s decision came after the CAG constituted a special team on October 15 to review allocations of at least 623 mines by the Rajasthan government in 2014-15.

However, the Congress leaders called the decision an effort to cover alleged political links in the scam and demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation probe under judicial monitoring.

The government’s decision came after the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) constituted a special team on October 15 to review allocations of at least 623 mines by the Rajasthan government in 2014-15. The team was to finalise its report in three months.

The multi-crore bribery scam had rocked the state in September which led to the arrest of eight mining department officials, including principal secretary (mines) Ashok Singhvi, by the anti-corruption bureau (ACB).

The state government had constituted a five-member committee to evaluate the mine lease decisions taken during November 1, 2014, to January 2015 when Ashok Singhvi was heading the mining department. These included 548 Letter of Intents (LoIs) and 53 licences.

The panel’s preliminary report found 4% of the 19,000 lease applications suspect as they were decided “in haste” on “the first come first served” basis. However, the state government cancelled all the licences and the applications finalised during Singhvi’s tenure without waiting for the committee’s final report. The same was communicated through a press release issued on Saturday night.

Senior Congress leader Ashok Gehlot said that chief minister Vasundhara Raje had taken the decision to save her chair as the CAG had constituted a special team to review the allocation on his party’s recommendations.

State Congress chief Sachin Pilot said the level of irregularities in mines allotment were not possible without a political patronage.He said an impartial probe into the matter was out of question as long as Raje stayed in the chief minister’s chair.