SC paves way for two special courts to try coal scam cases

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The Supreme Court on Monday paved the way for two special courts to try the coal scam cases. Presently, there are 41 coal block allocation scam cases pending trial with the Patiala House sessions court in Delhi.

A three judge bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde passed the order while considering an application filed by registrar general of Delhi high court to relieve special judge Bharat Parashar currently hearing the coal scam cases.

The CJI-headed bench had requested the high court to supply a panel of names of judicial officers with “high calibre and absolute integrity” to replace Parashar . It received a set of five names.

Out of the said names, the bench, also comprising justices AS Bopanna and V Ramsubramanian, selected two names — Arun Bharadwaj and Sanjay Bansal.

Special public prosecutor RS Cheema had recommended to the apex court two special courts instead of one in view of 41 cases pending trial.Solicitor general Tushar Mehta agreed to Cheema’s suggestion.MORE FROM THIS SECTION

The bench directed the appointment of the two judicial officers in the order of their seniority.

Parashar was appointed at the Supreme Court orders in July 2014 as special judge to exclusively hear coal scam cases. He continued in this post for six years.

In 2014, the SC set aside the 214 coal blocks allocated by the Centre between 1993 and 2010 on finding that the process was not transparent and unfair in parting with natural wealth of the country.

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