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Enforcement Directorate acts against Electrosteel Castings in coal block allocation case

The Enforcement Directorate has initiated action against Electrosteel Castings for its alleged involvement in criminal conspiracy and cheating in the allocation of a coal block.

“An Enforcement Case Information Report has been registered against Kolkata-based Electrosteel,” an official told ET.

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An official of Electrosteel, who did not want to be identified, said the company had no idea about the development.

The Central Bureau of Investigation had registered a case against the company and its associate concern Electrosteel Steels in December 2014.

Electrosteel Castings was accused of selling coal rejects from the Parbatpur block in Bokaro, Jharkhand allocated for its Sundargarh plant to Electrosteel Steels’ plant in Jharkhand which wasn’t identified as end user. The block, among the 40 odd that were operational when the Supreme Court cancelled all allocations, was put up for auction but eventually entrusted to Coal India when only one bid was made for it.

Electrosteel is also accused of acquiring 48.5% shares of Lanco Infrastructure, which was allocated a block without even applying for it. Electrosteel, which has iron ore mines in Jharkhand, is believed to be a possible target of an acquisition.

The ED’s eastern zone office, last Thursday, also attached Rs 379 crore property of Deepak Steel, a company held responsible for the Ulliburu illegal mining case in Odisha. Properties, land, houses and factories of Deepak Steel and its promoter Deepak Kumar Gupta’s other firms Deepak Steel and Power and Sneh Pushp were attached “The assets, including those of the directors of the company, have been attached under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act,” said an official.

The Ulliburu mining case was the most glaring of illegal mining cases where iron ore was being mined from an area that had not even been leased. It established the allegations by the Shah Commission, appointed by the previous UPA government, that illegal mining had been prevalent in Odisha.


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