PC Parakh was the chief whistle-blower in this case and here is a brief profile from Wiki:
In 2004, coal secretary P C Parakh informed PM the potential fraud
inherent in the discretionary allocation of the captive coal fields and
objected to it in writing. Still all the 142 coal blocks were allocated
without auction during the Prime Minister’s tenure in the coal ministry.
The Supreme Court observations on April 30 (2013) are undoubtedly harsh. No
other government in India has been criticized in such words. PC Parakh who is considered the whistleblower for the coalgate said
that he clearly pushed for auctions, but was overruled by the PM.
Our personal opinion is that this is a BJP driven ploy to get free election propaganda (going around the election commission rules). We agree that dirty tricks are considered fair play in love and war, but this relentless targeting of a man who has given all his blood, sweat, and tears to his nation seems quite distasteful and extremely petty.
book accuses Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of being weak and unable to
stamp out corruption on his watch, the second recent attack by an
insider that undermines the Congress party as it seeks re-election
despite trailing in opinion polls.
It said Singh’s inability to take on vested interests led to the so-called “Coalgate” scandal, which rocked his premiership.
It was the second book in the last week to portray 81-year-old Singh,
Prime Minister since 2004, as a well-intentioned man of high personal
integrity but one often unable to assert his authority.
Coalgate scandal erupted in 2012 after the public auditor questioned the
government’s awarding of mining concessions without competitive
bidding, which it said unduly benefited chosen private and state
companies and potentially cost the treasury billions of dollars in lost
Parakh said that Singh, though keen to introduce open
bidding, could not tackle resistance from coal ministers in his
administration. Parakh said he himself came under pressure from people
interested in acquiring coal blocks.
“Pressures come in the
form of enticements such as post-retirement assignments, partnership in
business, bribery, blackmail or pure intimidation. Pressures also come
from friends and relations,” Parakh wrote in the book. “Some
can resist these pressures. Others succumb,” he said, adding that at no
time did the Prime Minister’s office make recommendations or exert
pressure in favor of any party.