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NHAI compensation scam: SIT begins probe, senior revenue dept officials come under scanner

3 persons were fraudulently made beneficiaries of compensation for land acquired for Chandigarh-Ludhiana Expressway
Hindustan Times, Ludhiana | By HT Correspondent, Ludhiana
PUBLISHED ON NOV 14, 2019 11:19 PM IST

Some high-rank revenue department officials have come under the scanner as the newly formed special investigation team (SIT) on Thursday began its probe into the Rs 1.23-crore NHAI compensation scam relating to the acquisition of the Chandigarh-Ludhiana Expressway project.

The case pertains to making false entries in assessment register and e-rolls and fraudulently making three persons beneficiaries of compensation at Samrala and Ghulal village where the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) had acquired land for the project.

On Wednesday, commissioner of police Rakesh Agrawal formed the SIT comprising additional deputy commissioner of police (ADCP) Sachin Gupta and assistant commissioner of police (ACP) Harpal Grewal to probe the matter.

Gupta said the possibility of involvement of some high-rank officials cannot be ruled out as the file pertaining to the compensation had passed through various offices, but the scam could not be detected.

Two patwaris — Gurmail Singh and Parminder Singh — and a kanungo, were suspended on Wednesday for their alleged involvement in the fraud case.

The SIT on Thursday summoned officials and employees of the revenue department, including the accused patwaris, to join the investigation. “We have summoned all employees and officials of the revenue department and NHAI employees who have given written approval for the payment of compensation,” said Gupta.

The assessment register and e-rolls have signatures of the tehsildar, besides the patwaris and kanungo who have been booked.

SDM Amarinder Singh Malhi said the main beneficiary, Anil Kumar, is on the run. “His arrest is crucial as he can reveal the names of all those involved in the scam.”

The police had registered a case on November 9 against Anil, Vinay Kumar, Rajesh Kumar, patwari Rakesh Kumar and patwari Parminder Singh under Sections 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 467 (forgery of valuable security), 468 (forgery for cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy).

The names of Anil, Vinay and Rajesh were fraudulently added in the list of beneficiaries by making false entries in the assessment register and e-rolls.

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