The CBI has sought life imprisonment for former Union minister Dilip Ray who has been convicted in coal scam case. The CBI told the Delhi court that white-collar crimes are on the rise and maximum punishment needs to be awarded to Dilip Ray to send a message to the society.
Dilip Ray was convicted by the CBI court on October 6 in a case pertaining to irregularities in the allocation of a coal block in Jharkhand in 1999. While he has been convicted, the court is yet to pronounce the quantum of sentence for Ray, a former minister of state (coal) in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.
Notably, Ray, a resident of Odisha who also owns the Mayfair Group of Hotels, has been convicted by special judge Bharat Parashar for criminal conspiracy and other offences.
Meanwhile, the court after hearing the arguments of the convicts and CBI has reserved its order for October 26.
Coal ministry officials also convicted
Apart from Dilip Ray, the special court has also convicted two senior officials working in the Ministry of Coal at that time.
The officials include—Pradip Kumar Banerjee and Nitya Nand Gautam. The court also held Castron Technologies Limited (CTL) and its director Mahendra Kumar Agarwalla and Castron Mining Limited (CML) as guilty in the illegal allocation of the Brahmadiha coal block in Jharkhand’s Giridih to CTL in 1999.
Political career of Dilip Ray
Sixty-six-year-old Ray, a hotel tycoon and one of the founding members of the Biju Janata Dal, in the 1990s had parted ways with BJD in 2002. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha that year as an independent candidate with the support of some BJP MLAs of Odisha. He then joined the Congress in 2004 but quit it in 2008. In 2009, he joined the BJP and was elected as an MLA from the Rourkela Assembly constituency in 2014.
He, however, left the party in November 2018 after the Central Bureau of Investigation chargesheeted him in 2016 in the Brahmadiha coal scam case.
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