HindustanTimes Sun,21 Dec 2014

Clerks, ‘unofficial’ peon under police scanner

Debasish Panigrahi, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, February 21, 2011
First Published: 00:42 IST(21/2/2011) | Last Updated: 00:44 IST(21/2/2011)

Investigation into the case of pages from an important file related to the controversial Adarsh society missing, led the crime branch to a serious instance of breach in security at Mantralaya.


Sources in the crime branch said a desk officer from the urban development department (UDD), Gurudutt Madhukar Vajpe, had ‘employed’ a person to work as an errand boy in his office.

The Hindustan Times accessed the progress report of the investigation into the missing pages case submitted by the crime branch to the Bombay high court on February 14. The report highlights this lapse.

Sources said that it is a common practice in Mantralaya to informally pick people working for field offices to run errands instead of hiring someone through the lengthy but official staff selection process. 

The ‘peon’, Prashant Prakash Pathak, earn handsomely from the contributions made by UDD staff towards his salary. Sources said he was also allegedly issued an identity card by Vajpe for uninterrupted entry into the high-security zone.

Both Vajpe, who was seated at desk number 12, and Pathak are suspects in the case of the missing pages from the Adarsh file.

In the report, the crime branch has sought the court’s permission to conduct scientific tests such as brain mapping and lie detector tests on Pathak and Vajpe to further their probe. The crime branch also wanted to conduct tests on three other UDD staff – Vidya Dhabolkar, a clerk at the same desk as Vajpe, clerk Rajendra Naik, who was the custodian of the Adarsh file before Dhabolkar, and Waman Raul, a clerk who had allegedly made the last entry in the file in 2006.

During investigations, the crime branch learnt that Vajpe had given Pathak a temporary, hand-written security pass. “How can someone issue a pass to a person like that for entry into a high-security place such as Mantralaya?” a senior crime branch officer asked, requesting anonymity because he is not authorised to speak on the case.

A senior official from the UDD confirmed that Pathak had been informally placed in the department and even issued a security pass. “It is a serious matter. We have already issued a show-cause notice to two of our staff and disciplinary action will be initiated against them,” the official said, requesting anonymity because he did not want to be quoted on any issue relating to Adarsh.

Sources in the UDD claimed that the staff had employed one more person. Both were asked to leave after the crime branch pointed out the security lapses.

more from Mumbai

Flab-trap: Cosmetic surgery post weight loss on the rise

IT professional, Anita*, 51, was ecstatic when she lost 15 kg in just five months. But, the sudden weight loss had ended up making her look much older. Last month, she borrowed money from friends to get a facelift at a clinic in Bandra. “I was tired of looking fat. My marriage and work life were being affected and that’s when I decided to lose weight. I nearly starved and lost all the extra kilos but I ended up looking much older,” said Anita, who spent Rs75,000 on the cosmetic procedure.
Most Popular
Copyright © 2014 HT Media Limited. All Rights Reserved