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Vijay Singla under CBI scanner for alleged postings scam

Railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal is under scanner of the CBI in the crores-for-lucrative postings scam involving his nephew Vijay Singla. Rajesh Ahuja reports.

delhi Updated: May 05, 2013 01:08 IST
Rajesh Ahuja
Rajesh Ahuja
Hindustan Times

Railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal is under scanner of the CBI in the crores-for-lucrative postings scam involving his nephew Vijay Singla.

"Only the railway minister could get the lucrative postings offered by Sandeep Goyal, a Panchkula based businessman and an associate of Vijay Singla another businessman Ajay Garg," said an investigator on the condition of anonymity.

"Both Singla and Goyal were arrested together on Saturday after receiving Rs 90 lakh in cash on behalf of Mahesh Kumar, who is member (staff) of the railway board. Only the minister had the authority to get the jobs promised to Mahesh Kumar. Singla and Goyal were counting cash in the office of former when they were picked up," said the investigator.

Both Goyal and Singla were remanded to CBI custody for four days a special court. The agency was listening to the conversations of Goyal, Singla and Mahesh Kumar and Manjunath for the last one month.

"We will interrogate Goyal and Singla about the person or persons who were supposed to get Mahesh Kumar the promised jobs. Garg Singla's friend who was also involved in the conversations between Mahesh Kumar and Goyal," said the investigator.

According to CBI officials, Mahesh Kumar has been appointed member (staff) of the railway board, the highest decision making body in the railway ministry, only three days back.

Earlier he was working as general manager of the western railway. But he wanted to become member (electrical) of the railway board, which is considered a lucrative post. Mahesh Kumar asked Sandeep Goyal to help him get the job.

Goyal asked for Rs 10 crore for the purpose, half before the appointment and the rest after he gets the job. But the post of member electrical was to get vacant after two months.

Current chairman of the railway board Vinay Mittal was to retire in June and Kulbhushan, who is now member (electrical) would have been elevated as the chairman.

"But in the meanwhile, Mahesh Kumar told Goyal that he wanted additional charges of general manager (western railway) and of signal and telecommunication (S&T) till the time he becomes member (electrical). Goyal asked Rs 2 crore for the additional charges and Mahesh agreed to pay the amounts," said a CBI official.

Mahesh Kumar asked a railway supplier - NR Manjunath to help him arrange money and its delivery with promising future contracts once he becomes member (electrical) of the railway board.

NR Manjunath arranged for Rs 90 lakh in cash it was delivered by two couriers who went to Chandigarh in two separate cars made the delivered the cash to Vijay Singla and Goyal. Once the money was delivered, Goyal and Singla were arrested by the CBI.

"We have recovered Rs 89.68 lakh delivered to Singla and Goyal. Manjunath has been arrested in Bangalore where he is managing director of GG Tronics India Private Limited. His company is in the business of manufacturing railway signal products and automation components while Goyal's company Pyramid Electronics makes electrical equipments for the railway. Mahesh Kumar has been arrested in Mumbai and he is being brought back to Delhi. We have also arrested Rahul Yadav who is an employee of Manjunath," said an investigator.

The agency is looking for three more accused - Ajay Garg, Sushil Daga and Samir Sandhir who have been named as accused in the FIR.

According to sources, Rs 90 lakh was the first instalment of total bribe amount of Rs 2 crore. Rest of the amount was to be paid in the next three-four days.

The CBI is now looking into the following aspects of the case:

-What was the source of bribe money paid to Vijay Singla

-What benefits had been given in the past and promised in future to persons who arranged for bribe money

-Who are the other persons instrumental in paying the bribe money

-The persons among whom the bribe money was to be shared

-Who was the authority that was supposed to change the discipline of Mahesh Kumar from member (staff) to member (electrical)

-To ascertain the identity the official who were to be influenced by Vijay Singla for fulfilling the promises made to Mahesh Kumar

First Published: May 05, 2013 01:00 IST