Gharuan cops kept details of tippers to extort money: Vigilance bureau
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Gharuan cops kept details of tippers to extort money: Vigilance bureau

Head constable, acting at SHO’s behest, maintained five diaries with at least 200 entries of tippers crossing 10km stretch, says VB; both sent to two-day police remand

punjab Updated: Dec 12, 2017 18:54 IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Head constable Rashpal Singh and Gharuan SHO Sahib Singh

Five diaries recovered from head constable Rashpal Singh, who was allegedly caught taking bribe from a builder on Saturday, has revealed how he and Gharuan station house officer (SHO) Sahib Singh were extorting money from owners of tippers plying on the 10km stretch between Maan Khedi and the Kharar bypass.

A senior vigilance officer told HT that both used to charge ₹5,000 per month from a tipper driver or owner for providing the vehicle unhindered passage — with or without permit — through the stretch. The vigilance bureau (VB) officials have found nearly 200 entries of registration numbers of tippers, names of drivers, businessmen and builders.

A VB team, on the complaint of Sector-71 resident and contractor Jarnail Singh, laid a trap to catch the cops red-handed during a event where Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh was the chief guest on Saturday. The two have been sent to two-day police remand.

Set up naka every evening

Sources said Rashpal acted as the middleman on part of the SHO and maintained the record of all tippers and heavy vehicles passing through the area.

“During interrogation Rasphal admitted that he used to set up a naka every evening at 5:30 to fix the monthly bribe with the tippers passing the stretch,” said an investigating officer on the condition of anonymity.

The head constable was reportedly posted with Sahib Singh for the past three years in Patiala, Nayagaon and Handesra Dera Bassi and claimed to be his close confidant. All deals were struck by him on behalf of the SHO, said the officer.

“While searching Rashpal’s room at the Gharuan police station, the vigilance team found five diaries with over 200 names of tipper drivers and businessman whose trucks passed from the area,” said the officer.

The complainant had called Rashpal to collect the money on Saturday evening. The accused came in the SHO’s official car, leaving his duty at a nearby university where the CM was the chief guest. He was caught red-handed receiving ₹3,000 bribe in the presence of a dozen cops, said sources.

“During questioning, Rashpal pointed to the SHO’s involvement, following which he too was made to sit in the same room and confronted. He finally accepted the charge,” said the officer. The VB will also probe the duo’s dealings at their previous postings.

The complainant had told the VB that despite having all legal documents along with bills, the SHO and constable accused his tipper driver of carrying out illegal mining and sought money. On Friday, the complainant had allegedly given ₹7,000 to the SHO, after which he contacted the VB.

First Published: Dec 12, 2017 18:53 IST