To be caught napping has taken on a new meaning in Madhya Pra-desh. After nabbing two IAS officers, the cream of our bureaucratic set-up, for quietly helping themselves to 25 flats and 400 acres of land, the income-tax department has dug up more such cases.
In the case of another officer, the department found cash in washing machines, quilts and mattresses. And more delights were found in the bank lockers of a government engineer: 7.8 kg of gold and R1.6 crore in cash. Nothing compared to the likes of A Raja, Suresh Kalmadi and the Adarsh gang, but nevertheless not to be sneezed at.
But don’t blame these officers of being greedy. They simply have better saving habits than us. While we, the one-inco-me class, tend to spend a major part of our salary the moment it hits our accounts on silly things, these men and women just invest in real estate and gold. Not to mention innovative ways of stashing the booty. Imagine what lovely dreams one could have if one could hear the crisp crackle of currency notes when one sleeps at night. We may never know this bliss on account of not having two copper nickels to rub together on a good day. But this sure beats keeping one’s loot in the bank or in the stock market. The saving interest rates are nothing to write home about and who knows how many Shivraj Puri’s of Citibank fame are lurking around.
And if caught, they can always do a Sukhram. The former communications minister had the best excuse when the Central Bureau of Investigation seized Rs 3.6 crore in cash
concealed in mattresses from his official residence in 1996. He apparently told the officers that he did not know where the cash came from, he was just sleeping on it!