CAG indicts OSIC for irregularities in coal supply

Bhubaneswar: The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in its latest report has detected large scale irregularities in supply of coal to small and medium scale industries in 2009-2010 by public sector undertaking, the Odisha Small Industries Corporation (OSIC) on the basis of recommendations by District Industries Centres (DICs).

The Directorate of Industries, on the basis of the recommendations of the DICs, finalises the list of small and medium scale industries to procure coal for industrial purpose. The state government owned public sector undertaking the OSIC is the agency which supplies the coal to the small and medium scale industries.

The CAG in its report said that eight DICs had recommended the names of 47 industries of which as much as 39 industries were fake ones and the records of coal supplying agency the OSIC had revealed during audit to have supplied coal to the tune of Rs 2.30 crore to the fake companies. The CAG also pointed out that excess coal worth over Rs 1.27 crore was even supplied to some of these companies. The OSIC authorities did not even made any entry about the excess coal in the in-voice record of the corporation. The CAG report said that the OSIC also supplied excess coal to some industries worth Rs 1.31 crore without the joint assessment of the DICs and the Directorate of Industries.

On the other hand, the probe into the irregularities in supply of coal in another case registered earlier has reached the final stage and action  has already been initiated against three officials of the OSIC including one manager. Allegations were made against two former Chairmen of the OSIC, Pratap Jena and Badri Narayan Patra,  who are now ministers in the state cabinet. The government has since then formulated a new policy on supply of coal.