Illegal note exchange: CBI yet to trace ‘accused’ rail staff
Even 10 days after registering a preliminary enquiry against unidentified railway employees for allegedly helping some people park and exchange defunct currency notes worth Rs 11 lakh at Habibganj and Bhopal railway stations between November 9 and December 7, the CBI is still groping in the dark for real culprits.
Despite grilling over three dozen railway employees posted at unreserved ticketing system, passenger reservation system and parcel booking office, the central bureau of investigation (CBI) is yet to track down those behind the alleged conversion of demonetized currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 into new ones.
This matter came to light when three teams of CBI accompanied by vigilance teams of the West Central Railway conducted a surprise check at Habibganj, Bhopal and Itarsi railway stations in Madhya Pradesh on December 8.
The scrutiny of documents seized by CBI teams from cash sections of both Habibganj and Bhopal railway stations revealed that demonetized Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes totaling Rs 11 lakh were parked by outsiders and exchanged with new and existing currency notes with the help of some railway employees.
While defunct twin high-value currency notes worth Rs 6 lakh were exchanged with existing new ones at Habibganj railway station, Rs 5 lakh was parked and converted into new existing currency at Bhopal railway station. No wrongdoing, however, was detected in the scrutiny of documents seized from Itarsi railway station.
Unless the CBI tracks down those actually involved in helping outsiders park and exchange scrapped currency notes at those two railway stations, it can’t figure out the outsiders who were benefitted by it, sources privy to investigations told Hindustan Times.
The conversion of the preliminary enquiry into a regular case of corruption also hinges on the agency’s tracking down the wrongdoers and actual beneficiaries.
The prime suspects in the alleged wrongdoing are those railway employees at Habibganj and Bhopal railway stations who were tasked with depositing total cash receipts in banks at the end of each day between November 9 and December 7.