Scholarship fraud kingpin held after six years
The sleuths of the UP Police Economic Offence Wing (EOW) arrested Ankit Kumar Rajput, 34, from Dehradun on Wednesday night. On the run for nearly six years, Rajput is the key accused in a fraud case related to the distribution of scholarship to students of Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST) and economically weaker section in Bijnor district, police said.
Rajout ran a technical institute in Dehradun.
“Rajput has been arrested from his Dehradun hideout in Jagrati Vihar locality under Raipur police station limits,” said Abhay Nath Tripathi, spokesperson, state police.
Rajput was wanted in the case of fraudulently withdrawing scholarship of 1,015 students valuing around ₹ 6 crore between 2010 and 2012, he added.
A senior EOW official said Rajput was living in Dehradun with the changed identity of Rupesh alias Pintu and was running an unauthorised technical institute. Rajput had even prepared multiple identity proofs to pose himself as a local native of Dehradun. He used his links in Dehradun that he had developed while doing MBA from the Uttarakhand Institute of Management, Dehradun, between 2007 and 2009.
Another official, who was privy to investigation, said Rajput had stopped using his previous mobile numbers and did not contact his family members as well as his friends in Bijnor. He said the accused was tracked down when he recently withdrew some amount from a bank account in Dehradun operational on forged identity. He said the EOW was keeping watch on the account transaction as the same account was used to transfer the scholarship money in Bijnor.
Officials said Rajput was the kingpin of the racket and was missing since a case was registered in connection with the scholarship fraud in Bijnor on October 5, 2014.
He said the then District Social Welfare Officer Ajay Kumar Goswami had lodged the FIR for criminal breach of trust by public servant at a Bijnor police station.
The case was later handed over to the EOW on April 8, 2015 after which the EOW investigators had added other IPC sections for fraud, forgery, using forged document as genuine and Prevention of Corruption Act on the basis of their findings.
He said the probe revealed that the enrolment of non-existing students was shown at different educational institutes to get scholarship amount. He said that the EOW probe suggested that Rajput committed this fraud with the connivance of the then District Social Welfare Officer Rajnesh Kumar and other employees of his office, including chief clerk Ramesh Dayal, two supervisors Yogesh Kumar and Malik Mehmood Ahmad Khan. He said they all were also made accused and action was likely against them after the arrest of Rajput.