FCI 'corruption' case: DGM, private person sent to 5-day CBI custody
New Delhi, January 11, 2023
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday conducted searches at more than 50 locations in connection with a massive operation against corruption in the Food Corporation of India (FCI).
The raids were conducted in Chandigarh, Delhi, Punjab's Patiala, Ropar, Sunam, Mohali and Haryana's Ambala.
On Tuesday, the CBI arrested one Deputy General Manager Rajeev Kumar Mishra when he was about to receive a bribe of Rs 50,000 from one Ravinder Singh Khera in Punjab.
During the searches, the CBI has recovered cash of Rs 80 lakh from the premises of the accused Sudeep Singh, Executive Director, Nishant Barria, TA, Bassi Pathana, Manpreet Singh, AG-1, FSD Sunam; Navneet Kaur, TA, Navpreet Kaur, TA, Dappar and Satish Verma, Manager (Lab), Chandigarh. Other than cash, several incriminating documents and digital devices were also recovered.
A senior CBI official said that a massive exercise was conducted under "Operation Kanaka" to gather actionable inputs, identify accused regarding corrupt practices adopted by FCI officials, private rice millers and grain merchants by way of paying undue gratification to certain officials of the FCI for getting undue favours.
The CBI had been working on the inputs for last six months.
Nearly two days ago, a case was registered against 74 accused, including 34 serving and three retired officials of the FCI, 17 private persons and other entities.
"Huge amount of bribe was paid to FCI officials for extending favours to the private nexus operators. Private rice millers and grain merchants were paying bribes to FCI officials for getting favours in accommodating procurement of low quality foodgrains, malpractices in day-to-day operations in unloading of foodgrains, managing enquiries against various malpractices, etc," said the CBI official.
The official said that the officials in conspiracy with rice millers cover up the shortages in stocks and accept low quality foodgrains which are transported to other parts of the country.
The rice millers in turn allegedly paid a huge amount of bribe to the officials of FCI, including Technical Assistants, DGM, AGM, and even Executive Director, as part of channelised corruption.
The operation led to the arrest of DGM Mishra and Khera. Both are now in five-day custodial remand of the CBI.