A revenue official (patwari) posted at deputy commissioner (revenue) office in southwest Delhi has been arrested by the Anti Corrpution Branch (ACB) for allegedly demanding a bribe of Rs 5 lakh from a farmhouse owner.
The patwari, Sanjay Kumar Solanki, was caught red-handed accepting Rs 2 lakh from the complainant by an ACB team on Tuesday. He was booked under sections 7 and 13 of the prevention of corruption (POC) Act, a press statement issued by the ACB said.
ACB chief Mukesh Kumar Meena told HT that the farmhouse owner, Navin Jain, had approached them with a complaint against Solanki.
Jain, who works as a manager in a private company in south Delhi’s Nehru Place, told ACB that Solanki was demanding a bribe of `5 lakh to handle a complaint against his farmhouse in south Delhi.
An ACB official said that somebody had made a complaint with the DC revenue office about illegal construction and misuse of agricultural land for commercial purposes at the farmhouse.
Solanki was asked to conduct a probe and submits a report.
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“Jain alleged that Solanki had been frequently visiting their farmhouse and threatening to get it sealed for carrying out illegal construction and misuse of agricultural land. He threatened Jain to get the farmhouse demolished by submitting his enquiry report against them,” said Meena.
According to Meena, Solanki demanded a bribe to settle the issue and prepare his report in their favour. The bribe amount was later reduced to Rs 3.5 lakh and Solanki agreed to take Rs 2 lakh as first instalment from Jain’s office in Nehru Place on Tuesday.
Jain informed the ACB officials about the deal and a trap was laid by a seven-member team to nab Solanki.
Around 2pm, as Jain handed him Rs 2 lakh, the ACB’s raiding team surrounded the car and caught Solanki with the money. “Solanki initially pleaded innocence giving excuses. However, he later admitted to his crime when confronted with evidences collected against him,” the ACB official said.
Three months ago, the ACB had arrested a sub-registrar posted in south Delhi’s Mehrauli for allegedly demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs 25,000. In April, a forest guard posted at the deputy conservator’s office in west Delhi was caught red-handed while taking bribe. Dinesh Kumar had demanded `2 lakh from the complainant for cutting two trees at a project site.