68 SSPs, SPs accused under the scam of Rs 112 Cr

Jammu and Kashmir

SRINAGAR, Apr 25:  A multi-crore scam has surfaced in Jammu and Kashmir Police department for hiring of vehicles for Parliamentary and Assembly elections in 2014 has brought 68 Superintendents of Police, Senior Superintendents of Police and Commandants across the State under the scam

These officers have shown scooters, motor-cycles, bulldozers, tractors, own private cars, condemned vehicles and Government vehicles hired as taxis and buses and swindled money from the “Security Related Expenditure (SRE)” of Rs 115.68 crore provided by the Government of India.

The graft has been exposed by the Central Audit Wing of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) during the audit of a sample of nine Drawing and Disbursing Officers (DDOs) who are among 68 DDOs who got over Rs 116 crore from the Police Headquarters for “Carriage of Constabulary and Hiring of Vehicles” under “Security Related Expenditure (SRE)”.

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A letter (COCHOV/2015-16/07 dated 28-03-2016) written by Deputy Accountant General of the CAG to Director General of Jammu and Kashmir Police along with 162-page report says that CAG has found Rs 6.09 crore irregularities and misappropriation by 9 DDOs of the funds meant for “Carriage of Constabulary and Hiring of Vehicles”.

According to report, major embezzlement and misappropriation of Rs 2.0828 crore has been done by then SSP Police Control Room Srinagar. He had hired 3463 vehicles, out of which Audit team has checked 2348 and found 368 vehicles as fictitious. The officer had drawn money against two Government vehicles as well and shown them hired as taxis.

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The then SSP PCR Jammu has done embezzlement and misappropriation of Rs 1.6272 crore. He had hired 3040 vehicles, out of which Audit team has checked 2086 and found 237 vehicles as fictitious. The officer had drawn money against three Government vehicles as well and has drawn double payment against 20 hired vehicles.

The report says that besides then SSP PCR Srinagar and Jammu, then SSPs of Jammu, Kathua, Samba, Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora and Staff Officer to Additional Director General Armed Police have also hired cars, buses and embezzled and misappropriated Rs 4.1458 crore.

The report says that these 9 DDOs had hired 8, 996 vehicles for the conduct of Parliamentary and Assembly elections. The Audit team has checked 5, 957 vehicles and found 755 as fictitious.

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They have drawn payment against 8 Government vehicles by showing them as taxis and against 20 hired vehicles they have drawn double payments.
The report suggests that records with regard to vehicles hired by the sampled nine DDOs, were verified by the audit against the vouchers of payments available in the Accountant General Office and the vehicle registration records of the respective Regional Transport Offices (RTOs).

The hired taxis when verified with the RTOs in different districts have shown that a large number of hired taxis are actually scooters like Bajaj, Chetak, LML Vespa, Activa and motor cycles like Passion, Bullet, Hero Honda. Even the money was withdrawn against Mahindra Tractors and Bulldozers and they have been shown hired as carriers for constabulary.

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In few cases, the cars that were hired and registration number of vehicles shown and against which payments have been made, actually are condemned vehicles like Tata Sumo bearing No. JKB 5826.  In certain other cases, registration numbers of vehicles against which payment has been drawn, have yet not been allotted by the RTOs.