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Stationery scam: Chandigarh vigilance gets nod to register FIR

Constable Jagjeet Singh, posted at the IT Park police station, was the whistleblower. In his complaint, he stated how officials at the headquarters prepared fake requisitions, notings and bills and got the money transferred into the account of a shop in Sector 17 even when nothing was purchased. 

punjab Updated: Jan 18, 2018 11:44 IST
Shailee Dogra
Shailee Dogra
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Stationery scam,Chandigarh,Chandigarh vigilance
A probe, initiated in June 2017, indicted officials of submitting fictitious bills, showing purchase of stationery meant for all city police stations, to misappropriate Rs 35-lakh funds. (HT File )

After four months, the UT adviser has given the nod to the vigilance department to register a first-information report in the alleged Rs 35-lakh stationery scam in the police department. The UT adviser is the chief vigilance officer (CVO).

The role of the former in-charge of the stationery branch at the police headquarters and a senior administrative officer, who is now retired, are under the scanner. “We are in the process of registering an FIR,” said Eish Singhal, superintendent of police (SP, headquarters and vigilance), while not revealing any other details.

Fictitious bills

The UT vigilance department in September 2017 recommended an FIR against all erring officials at the police headquarters. The recommendation was made after a probe initiated in June 2017 indicted the officials of submitting fictitious bills, showing purchase of stationery meant for all city police stations, to misappropriate Rs 35-lakh funds.

Constable Jagjeet Singh, posted at the IT Park police station, was the whistleblower. In his complaint, he stated how officials at the headquarters prepared fake requisitions, notings and bills and got the money transferred into the account of a shop in Sector 17 even when nothing was purchased.

He had filed an RTI application in May 2016 and was asked to inspect the voluminous records a month later. It was during this inspection that he found all fake bills bearing the same handwriting.

The constable alleged the bills were being prepared in a separate room in the basement of the headquarters. He had also alleged that a senior officer had helped the accused by misusing his authority and concealing the facts.

The senior officer retired in September as extension was denied to him, pending inquiry.

Records destroyed

Jagjeet Singh alleged that in order to keep the scam under wraps, the records had been destroyed.

In June 2017, the vigilance department had sought records for the year 2012-2016 from the UT police. In its reply, the department said there are no records available with the department for 2013-14 and 2014-15, while the records for 2012-13 had been destroyed.

Jagjeet Singh alleged even though the records were destroyed after approval from the competent authority, the file seeking approval was moved three days after UT director general of police Tajender Singh Luthra had issued order to conduct an audit on August 8, 2016.

First Published: Jan 18, 2018 11:43 IST