Wednesday, May 10, 2017

ACB files three FIRs in PWD scam

The Hindu: New Delhi: Wednesday, May 10, 2017.
The Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) on Monday registered three separate FIRs in connection with an alleged scam pertaining to the Delhi government’s Public Works Department (PWD).
One of the FIRs puts in the dock a company owned by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s brother-in-law Surender Kumar Bansal, who passed away on Monday. The FIRs were registered on the basis of a complaint by Rahul Sharma, the founder of NGO Roads Anti-Corruption Organisation (RACO).
He has alleged irregularities in the grant of contracts for roads and sewer lines in Delhi in 2015-16. The three companies named in the FIRs include Mr. Bansal’s Renu Constructions and those owned by Kamal Singh and Pawan Kumar.
“Three cases have been registered on the basis of a complaint by RACO. Since there are three separate companies, three FIRs under sections of forgery, cheating and prevention of corruption Act have been registered,” said ACB chief Mukesh Kumar Meena.
RTI application
RACO, which claims to monitor construction projects in the Capital, has alleged that a firm linked to Mr. Bansal was involved in financial irregularities in building a drainage system in north-west Delhi. According to documents obtained by RACO through an RTI application, invoices pertaining to the project were sent to the Sales Tax Department for verification. The Department informed in writing that bills sent to the PWD were fabricated, Mr. Sharma alleged.
Mr. Meena said it had been found during probe that fake bills were attached for materials that weren’t supplied and some of the bills were from companies that don’t exist or supply those materials. He said the probe ahead would focus on the possible involvement of PWD officers. In his complaint, Mr. Sharma also alleged that Mr. Kejriwal and PWD Minister Satyendra Jain had misused their office for grant of contracts to Mr. Bansal. However, Mr. Meena clarified that they haven’t been named in the FIR.
According to a senior officer, the ACB has already questioned some PWD officials, while representatives of the three firms in question will be interrogated next week. The ACB had in January sent a notice to the PWD asking it to share details pertaining to alleged irregularities. The department had submitted certain files to the anti-graft body in this regard.
Kapil Mishra to visit ACB
Former Delhi Minister Kapil Mishra is scheduled to visit the ACB office at 11 a.m. on Thursday in connection with the ₹400 crore water tanker scam.