INDIA: Saraya Industries denies allegations of corruption over Punjab cogen projects

Published: 06/19/2017, 1:47:39 PM

The Saraya Industries Limited has denied the allegations by Congress leader Lalli Majithia that they have caused a loss of INR9.50 billion (US$147.5 million) to Punjab Cooperative Sugar Mills with the alleged connivance of former Akal minister Bikram Singh Majithia, reports Sugaronline.

"Allegations made Sunday that benefits worth crores in allocation of power tenders of nine sugar mills to Saraya Industries limited are absolutely baseless. Allegations seem to have been made due to misinformation and with intent to target Bikram Singh Majithia through us. We would like to highlight that we conduct our business through utmost propriety and ethics and take pride in the fact that in the 100 years of our existence we have succeeded in guarding these values. We have always relied upon our technical abilities and expertise in conducting our business," said Pardeep Ahuja, Director of Saraya Industries Limited in a statement.

The company highlighted that it has not caused any losses to the cooperative sugar mills as alleged. The company said it is in no way associated with the company A2Z as alleged. A2Z is a publicly listed Company having no relation with Saraya Industries Limited.

In 2008 Punjab Sugarfed under the able guidance of the then Cooperation Minister Capt. Kanwaljit Singh came out with a Public tender in seven different newspapers including popular newspapers like The Tribune, Indian Express and others. It was a tender inviting Company to setup cogen plants on BOOT (Built own operate and transfer) basis at nine cooperative sugar mills. The company said it participated in this Public tender by sending in its bid document. The bidders were asked to give their bids on the percentage of share of revenue they would share with the cooperative sugar mill from the power generated from this cogen project at the sugar mill. The tenders were conducted in an absolutely open and transparent manner.

Saraya Industries Limited was the highest bidder in four of these nine projects. The project is setting up of INR850 million power plant by Saraya Industries Limited and at the end of the BOOT period giving this huge asset free of cost (zero value) to the cooperative mill. The company said that at no time was there any right of Saraya Industries Limited on the cooperative sugar mills as was alleged Sunday.

In 2011 cooperative mills initiated arbitration against Saraya Industries Limited and the arbitrator dealt with the issue and award was passed based on the merits of the case.

The company said the figures of INR9.15 billion have no credibility and are arbitrary. It has requested the opportunity to comment on the same once the details of these figures are provided.