VIJAYAWADA: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday filed a case against Adani Enterprises and former officials of the National Cooperative Consumer Federation (NCCF) on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating and criminal misconduct in alleged irregularities in the supply of coal to the Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation (APGENCO).
An FIR was registered against Adani Enterprises Limited, Virender Singh, former chairman of NCCF, GP Gupta, former managing director of NCCF and SC Singhal, former senior advisor of NCCF, under Section 154 of the CrPC.
As per the complaint against Virender Singh and others, on June 29, 2010, APGENCO floated a limited tender enquiry for the supply of 6 lakh MT of imported coal on a ‘Free on Rail’ destination basis to Dr Narla Tata Rao Thermal Power Station in Vijayawada and the Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant in Kadapa from Kakinada, Vizag, Chennai, Krishnapatnam or any other port.
The APGENCO chief engineer forwarded the same to seven PSUs including NCCF Hyderabad. The tender enquiry was sent by the Hyderabad office of the NCCF to SC Singha, the then senior advisory of NCCF in New Delhi.
After receiving the notice for tender from APGENCO, the NCFF head office, instead of initiating the process of floating an open tender to call for bids from the competitive bidders, selected a single party, M/s Maharishi Brothers Coal Limited (MBCL), to supply 6 lakh MTs for a margin of 2.25 per cent.
On July 7, 2010, APGNCO informed NCCF Hydrabad that the due date of submission of the tender was extended to noon on July 12, 2019. Subsequently, the award of the work to MBCL was cancelled. On the same day, senior officials of the NCCF SC Singhal, GP Gupta, and Sh Virender Singh conducted the meeting, a draft tender notice was finalised, and it was decided to open the offers on July 10 at NCCF Hyderabad. However, the draft tender file was not sent to the Fina-
nce Division for concurrence.
On July 10, NCCF received offers from six bidders — Adani Enterprises, Vyom Trade Links, Maheshwari Brothers, Coal Swarana Projects, Gupta Coal India and Kyori Oremen.
Of them, Adani Enterprises, Vyom Trade Links, Kyori Oremen did not quote any NCCF margin. Coal Swarana Projects, Gupta Coal India and Kyori Oremen were rejected by the NCCF head office in Delhi citing non-fulfilment of tender conditions.
The CBI, in its FIR, said its inquiry revealed that post-tender negotiations were done by senior officials of the NCCF to give undue favour to Adani Enterprises, though it failed to qualify when the tender was opened in Hyderabad NCCF. Though one Munish Sehgal, Adani Enterprises was conveyed the offer margin of NCCF and the company agreed to pay minimum service margin at 2.25 per cent to NCCF. In the process, two important conditions laid down in tender notice were ignored.
In the inquiry, it was further revealed that Adani Enterprises had given an unsecured loan of `16.81 crores to Vyom Trade Links Limited in 2008-09. Further, it was revealed that the bank guarantees of Adani Enterprises and Vyom Trade Links Limited were issued by the same bank (SBI) and at the same time. Therefore, it is prima facie apparent that Adani Enterprises Limited presented Vyom Trade Links Limited as a proxy company in the APGENCO tender issue.
According to the CBI, when the issue of award of supply order to APGENCO was placed before the Business committee of NCCF for information, misleading information was given by NCCF MD GP Gupta. The business committee was informed that tender notice was published in newspapers.
GS Meena, CBI inspector, New Delhi has been entrusted with the investigation of the case.
Negotiation gave undue favour, says CBI
The CBI, in its FIR, said its inquiry revealed that post-tender negotiations were done by senior officials of the NCCF to give undue favour to Adani Enterprises, though it failed to qualify when the tender was
opened in Hyderabad NCCF