Mining row: Probe exposes

cover-up bid by Rana’s men

Chandigarh, October 9- Power and Irrigation Minister Rana Gurjit Singh’s front men made an attempt to cover up the sand mining scandal with a bogus partnership firm after the expose, but they “failed miserably”, Justice JS Narang Commission’s report has brought out.
The Tribune had reported on May 25 that how four employees of Rana Gurjit had bagged mining contracts. Taking cognisance, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh had constituted a judicial commission of inquiry under Justice JS Narang (retd).
As per the report, when the commission started inquiring into the money trail of around Rs18 crore deposited with the government for bidding for mines at Mehadipur and Saidpur, Sanjit Randhawa (son of minister’s election agent Capt JS Randhawa) and Sahil Singla (son of minister’s chartered accountant Triloki Nath Singla) claimed that it was their partnership firm Rajbir Enterprises which actually placed the bid and deposited the money. They also claimed that besides others, the minister’s former cook, Amit Bahadur, and Kulwinder Pal Singh were partners in the firm and owned 5 per cent shares each.
When the commission asked Randhawa if he supplied the partnership deed to the firm’s bank branch where the account was opened, he answered in negative. Later, he said the firm did not have a bank account. “It is correct that in the partnership firm, Rajbir Enterprises, no money could be deposited as no bank account was opened. Also no money was deposited with the firm in cash as no contribution was made by any of the three partners in the capital account,” he said.
He also failed to produce the registration record of the firm. He accepted that in his earlier statement, he had “mistakenly stated” before the commission that it was a registered firm. “I had mistakenly given the statement,” he accepted.
When the commission was constituted on May 30, both Singla and Randhawa tried to cover up the money trail by floating Rajbir Enterprises, which they claimed was formed in April. They tried to show that the money came from other partners of the firm. But the commission caught their lie. In its report, the commission concluded: “A miserable effort has been made to project that the bid was given by Amit Bahadur and Kulwinder Pal Singh as partners of the firm which was created on April 10-11, 2017, in the name of Rajbir Enterprises.”
It further said: “Rajbir Enterprises does not have any bank account. Another miserable attempt was made by all of them for creating another partnership firm on June 10, 2017, again under the name of Rajbir Enterprises Mohali. This firm too could not open any bank account. ”
Amit Bahadur had accepted before the commission that “new partners were inducted in this firm after the setting up of the commission on May 30”.


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