Former PM Manmohan Singh charged with corruption in coal scandal that cost India billions

A special court has charged former Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh with corruption and criminal conspiracy for his alleged role in a multibillion dollar scandal over the sale of coal fields.

The charges, which also include breach of trust, come despite the Central Bureau of Investigation finding no prosecutable evidence against Singh or others embroiled in the case.

Judges ordered Singh and five others to appear in court on April 8.

Singh as prime minister had direct charge of the coal ministry when some of the coal field allocations to private companies were made.

Singh's Congress party-led government was accused of costing the treasury hundreds of billions of dollars by selling or allocating more than 200 coal blocks between 1993 and 2010 without competitive bidding.