Coal block case: SC yet to name appropriate bench

New Delhi, Sep 15 (IANS) The Supreme Court hearing into the plea by former prime minister Manmohan Singh and industrialist Kumaramangal Birla for quashing criminal proceedings against them for alleged wrongdoing in the allocation of the Talabira-II coal block to Hindalco is likely to be delayed as an appropriate bench is yet to be named to hear the matter.

An apex court bench headed by Chief Justice H.L. Dattu on Tuesday directed the deletion of matter figuring in the advanced list for September 21.

“You are here not there,” Chief Justice Dattu said, noting that the summoning of Manmohan Singh and Kumaramangalam Birla was stayed by a bench headed by Justice V. Gopala Gowda while the matter relates to a coal block allocation case being heard by a three-judge bench headed by Justice Madan B. Lokur.

The matter came up on Tuesday as senior counsel Kapil Sibal had told the court on Monday that the matter was listed for hearing on September 21, though notice had been issued but the pleading was yet to conclude.

He said that in the absence of pleading being complete, the matter cannot be listed for hearing.

The chief justice, while deleting the matter listed for hearing on September 21, granted liberty to mention the matter before it for hearing at a later stage.

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