Job aspirants in Maharashtra have allegedly paid bribes to conmen who promised them jobs in Central government departments, an incident that has raised suspicion about the existence of a nationwide racket whose investigation has now been taken over by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
Nashik resident Ajay Pandurang Patil, in his complaint to the CBI alleged that bribes running into thousands of rupees were demanded from him by a group of accused, most of whom hailed from Karnataka, who had promised to get him posted in a Union government office.
The alleged illegal acts took place between October 2022 and August 2023.
The kingpin of the racket has been identified as Ajay Kumar, a resident of Vinayak Nagar, in Karnataka’s Bellary. The co-accused include Biraba Palit, a resident of Gulbarga in Karnataka, Rupesh, Abhishek, Deepak Mandal and Sandhya.
The CBI has registered a case under provisions for suspected criminal conspiracy, offence relating to public servant being bribed, offence relating to taking due advantage to influence public servant by corrupt or illegal means or by exercise of personal influence.
Meanwhile, in a separate case the Central Bureau of Investigation has caught a sub-inspector of Police Station Barakhamba Road, New Delhi, while accepting a bribe of Rs 4.5 lakh from the complainant.
Sub-inspector Varun Chichi was arrested on the complaint of Manoj Kumar, an employee of Pearls Company and attached to MD Nirmal Singh Bhangoo. He alleged the sub-inspector who was the investigating officer in a case against Bhangoo, who was brought to the police station from Tihar jail, demanded Rs 25 lakh from him in exchange for not arresting and implicating the latter’s daughter Barinder and son-in-law Harsatinder Pal Singh in the case registered against Bhangoo. At the stage of verifying Manoj’s complaint, CBI investigators recorded a WhatsApp call conversation between Chichi and an in-person conversation between the two. In the recording, the suspected policeman was purportedly heard agreeing to accepting Rs 5 lakh as a part payment of bribe.
Later, the CBI laid a trap and caught another sub-inspector of the police station while accepting the bribe or undue advantage of Rs 4.5 lakh from the complainant, as per directions of the said sub-inspector of Police Station Barakhamba Road, New Delhi. Searches were later conducted at the premises of both the sub-inspectors.