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Tuesday, Sep 17, 2019

Graft case: Day after his driver arrested taking bribe, Patiala RTO named in FIR

On Sunday, the VB arrested the RTO’s driver while accepting a bribe of ₹40,000 from a transporter for hassle-free movement of his trucks

punjab Updated: Feb 27, 2018 10:25 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Patiala

The Punjab Vigilance Bureau (VB) has named Patiala regional transport officer (RTO) Gurpreet Singh Thind in the first information report (FIR) a day after his driver, assistant sub-inspector Harjinder Singh, was arrested while accepting a bribe of Rs 40,000 from a transporter in Rampura Phul.

VB officials say “Thind’s role is under the scanner as his driver used to demand bribe at his behest”. VB director and official spokesperson G Nageswara Rao confirmed that Thind has been named in the FIR. “We will divulge details after collecting evidences,” he said.

Senior superintendent of police (vigilance), Bathinda range, Jagjit Singh said evidences indicate towards RTO’s involvement. “A diary has been recovered which has records of the bribe money collected. The property of the ASI, arrested by VB, is disproportionate to his known source of income. A driver can’t operate at such a level without the involvement of his boss. We have taken the accused on remand and a report will be submitted to the VB headquarters for action. As of now, the RTO’s role is also under the scanner,” he said.

He said some documents of RTO office have also been seized from the vehicle being driven by the ASI. He has a plush house in Phulkiana Enclave, a posh colony in Patiala, a flat in the prime location of Mohali and plots. The VB conducted searches in his house and seized some documents. “An ASI can’t have such properties without unfair means,” said a VB official.

Even the role of some Patiala-based vigilance bureau officials is under the scanner as they failed to act despite rampant corruption in the RTO office. A source report has been sent to the director vigilance saying that despite being a PCS officer, Thind remained the district transport officer during most of his service.

Fearing VB crackdown, then entire RTO office staff remained absent on Monday.

First Published: Feb 27, 2018 10:23 IST