The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Friday busted a major scam at the Regional Transport Office (RTO) at Thane.
Over Rs 10 lakh unaccounted cash was found at the office which was immediately seized even as the search and scrutiny operation is on to gauge the magnitude of the scam.
Though no arrests were made on Friday, ACB sources said many key officers from the Thane RTO would be caught during the investigation into the scam, which is likely to run into hundreds of crores of rupees.
The ACB had been tipped off about a racket that was being run at the Thane RTO.
As per the information, fake documents, including bank challans were being made in connection with collection of Professional Tax at the RTO.
The task of collection of Professional Tax from commercial vehicles was vested with the Sales Tax department till 2006. However, later it was assigned to the RTO thereafter.
The information was verified by the ACB through a discreet inquiry. During the course of inquiry, the bureau came across a few bank challans in connection with collection of Professional Tax which were found to be fake. It became clear that the amount collected towards Professional Tax from commercial vehicles were being “pocketed” by the RTO officials and their agents, the ACB said.
During the raid, the RTO officials who were present, failed to give any satisfactory explanation about the large quantity of cash lying in the office. ACB said that some private persons were suspected to have been engaged by the RTO for running the racket.
The officers and staff from the bureau are examining the records regarding the collection of Professional Tax at the RTO. The search operations were in progress at the time of going to the press.