A police officer seen as trying to make money from a troubled electricity customer fell into the vigilance bureau trap.
An ambush team claimed to have caught assistant sub-inspector (ASI) Sukhpal Singh accepting Rs 4,000 as bribe from Sanjeev Singh, who on October 8 was caught stealing electricity for his house from Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL), which afterwards had imposed a heavy penalty on him.
ASI Sukhpal Singh was the investigating officer in the electricity-theft case. Since Sanjeev Kumar had no excuse, he submitted the fine and asked the police officer to now shut the case.
Keen to cost him more, the ASI demanded Rs 5000 from the defaulter allegedly. "The officer is posted at the anti-power-theft police station near the thermal-energy plant in Bathinda," said Janak Raj, deputy superintendent of police in the vigilance bureau. "The complainant, who is also the defaulter, is from Paras Ram Nagar in Bathinda."
The complainant approached the bureau and said the officer wanted money to close the case, even though he had paid the entire penalty of Rs 34,000 to the PSPCL. "The bureau laid the trap after fact finding and caught the ASI in the presence of two of the government officials as witnesses," said the DSP. "Marked notes were seized from him."
The vigilance bureau lodged the case in Bathinda under the Prevention of Corruption Act of 1988.