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UPSRTC officials on STF radar

Fake ticket scam racket was operational for more than a decade causing massive revenue loss to the corporation.Several officers at the UP State Road Transport Corporation headquarters are on the Special Task Force’s radar for their suspected role.

lucknow Updated: Aug 25, 2018 14:02 IST
Brajendra K Parashar
Brajendra K Parashar
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
UPSRTC,STF radar,Fake ticket scam
The racket the STF busted had been continuing for more than a decade causing massive revenue loss to the corporation, as per the statement recorded of dozen of employees arrested from the spot the same day.(Representative image)

Several officers at the UP State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) headquarters in Lucknow are on the Special Task Force’s (STF) radar for their suspected role in sale of fake tickets to passengers in buses on the Aligarh-Mathura route.

The racket the STF busted on Wednesday had been continuing for more than a decade causing massive revenue loss to the corporation, as per the statement recorded of dozen of employees arrested from the spot the same day.

“We have asked the STF to probe the role of headquarters officers too, apart from that the regional managers, assistant managers, checking squads etc in the regions concerned,” UPSRTC managing director cum transport commissioner P Guruprasad said.

The STF, sources revealed, had gathered vital clues on the possible involvement of some headquarters officers as well as those in the field by putting their cellphones on surveillance and intercepting the conversation between them and the racketeers now in police net.

On a go-ahead by Guraprasad, the STF finally conducted its operation on Wednesday. Interestingly, two buses they found carrying passengers without valid tickets had hired armed bouncers on board.

“In a joint operation with the UPSRTC team, the STF on July 21 arrested the fake ticket racket’s kingpins Devendra Singh and Megh Singh besides nine conductors, drivers and bouncers,” the STF said in a statement. Both the kingpins were said to have been posted in the Hathras depot for a very long time.

“The racketeers used to distribute fake tickets to passengers in 40-50 buses operating on the Aligarh-Mathura-HarharasSadabad route by tampering with the handheld electronic ticketing machines causing revenue loss to the tune of crores to the UPSRTC,” the STF spokesman said.

During the course investigation, the STF was tipped by an informer on Wednesday and the agency and UPSRTC jointly decided to send four STF sleuths in plain clothes as passengers in the buses no UP 85 AA 9036 and UP 85 AH 9600. On coming to know of the police presence, the bus conductors, drivers and bouncers made calls asking their aides to gather at the Sasani town.

“However, showing exemplary courage, the cops succeeded in arresting 11 persons with a country-made 315 bore ‘katta’ along with cartridges, cell phones, cash etc,” claimed the spokesman.

Guruprasad said he requested the STF bosses to assist in busting the racket.

“During our close monitoring we found several buses on the Aligarh-Mathura route doing erratic business and this alerted us, he said adding the corporation would take strict action against anyone found involved in the racket after the STF submitted its report.

UPSRTC sources said there might be several other routes where a similar racket was flourishing.

“I remember, how the squads that I dispatched from here to conduct checking in the buses on certain routes in western UP were manhandled and chased away by the bus staff and their hired bouncers,” recalled a general manager posted at the UPSRTC headquarters in Lucknow.

First Published: Aug 25, 2018 13:59 IST