September 27, 2020

Scam cuffs on circle officer

Bhagalpur: Naugachia police arrested Sabour circle officer Tarun Kumar Keshri on Friday night for his alleged role in embezzlement of more than Rs 20 lakh of floods’ relief items.

He was produced in the court of Naugachia additional judicial magistrate III Santosh Gupta, who sent him to judicial custody for 14 days.

Keshri was the circle officer in Rangra block under the jurisdiction of Naugachia sub-division in Bhagalpur when the flood occurred in 2016. According to police sources, the Keshri had given a cheque for payment to one Amit Jaiswal, a wholesaler in Naugachia against supply of different food items distributed among flood victims in 2016.

“The actual payment to Jaiswal should have been Rs 1,84,000 against the items he supplied. But during the fraud committed during the Srijan scam, the officer concerned assigned for assessing financial irregularities found that Jaiswal was paid Rs 21,84,000 instead of Rs 1,84,000 through a cheque signed by Keshri,” a source said.

Police further alleged that in connivance of Sadanand Tanti, the then nazir of Rangra block, Jaiswal had committed the fraud by adding the figure “2” before Rs 1,84,000 and hence, withdrew Rs 21, 84,000 illegally from block’s account in the bank.

“However Tanti’s name was not in the FIR but during investigation, police sniffed the former circle officer’s involvement and prayed in court for his arrest. Tanti and Jaiswal are already out on bail but since there was a warrant of arrest against Keshri pending, we arrested him from his office in Bhagalpur’s Sabour block,” a sub-inspector told on condition of anonymity.

While being taken to Naugachia court on Friday, Keshri claimed innocence. “I had signed a cheque of Rs 1,84,000 as per norms. But if someone commits a fraud with it to withdraw excess money, where’s my fault?” he asked reporters.

The hearing of the case is scheduled in Naugachia court on April 16.

Courtesy: The Telegraph

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