Mere demand of bribe is a punishable offence, says Bombay high court
A case was registered by ACB against employees of Maharashtra Agro Industries Development Corporation (MAIDC) for allegedly demanding bribe.mumbai Updated: Mar 25, 2018 01:43 IST
In an important ruling, the Bombay high court has held that mere demand of bribe is punishable under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act, 1988.
A bench of Justices RM Savant and Sarang Kotwal said Section 7 of PC Act — which uses words “accepts” or “obtains” and phrases such as “agrees to accept” or “attempts to obtain” — clearly indicates that mere demand is covered under the law.
On July 29, 2017, the anti-corruption bureau had registered an offence against Rajendra Shinde and Sanjay Bramhankar— employees of Maharashtra Agro Industries Development Corporation (MAIDC) — after a complaint was lodged by one Ravish Maru, who manufactures HDPE pipes. The pipes are supplied to various zilla parishads through MAIDC and the payment is again routed to Maru through the agency. Maru alleged that they had demanded 2% of the total bills paid by the MAIDC. Shinde and Bramhankar approached the high court and sought quashing of an FIR.
They argued that mere demand of bribe does not amount to an offence. The complainant also alleged that the accused had accepted Rs50,000 from him as bribe for disbursal of part of the payment.