FCI Godown owner among 2 held for accepting bribe: ACB

Srinagar: Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Monday claimed to have trapped and arrested FCI Godown owner, proprietor of Sheikh Suppliers and Contractors, Chandpora, Budgam and a Weigher red-handed while demanding and accepting bribe of Rs 5,000.

A complainant approached Anti Corruption Bureau with a written complaint against the office bearers of FCI Godown Chandpora Budgam, alleging demand of bribe from the complainant for unloading his truck, a statement reads.

“The truck is associated with transportation of food-grain for FCI and had arrived at FCI Godown, Chandpora with a load of rice on 12-08-2023. Since then the truck had not been unloaded and the office bearers had finally told the complainant to approach Godown owner and Tajamul Hassan Shah, Weigher. The complainant accordingly approached the Godown Owner, who told him to deposit an amount of Rs 1500 into his bank account. Further, the Weigher told him to pay a bribe of Rs 3500 before his truck could be unloaded,” the statement said.

The complainant, however, chose not to pay a bribe and approached ACB Srinagar for taking legal action against the accused as provided under law, it said.

On receipt of the complaint, a case under FIR number 16/2023 under section 7, 7A of PC Act 1988 was registered with PS ACB Srinagar and investigation was taken up.

During the course of investigation, a trap team was constituted by this Bureau. The team laid a successful trap and caught the accused Weigher red-handed while demanding and accepting a bribe amount of Rs 3500 from the complainant, the ACB said.

“The money was recovered from the accused on the spot. Moreover, before receiving the receipt of transported food-grain, the driver was asked by the Godown Owner to deposit an amount of Rs 1500 into his bank account. The accused Godown Owner has been identified as Ab Majeed Sheikh, son of Ghulam Ahmad Sheikh of Firdousabad, Batmaloo Srinagar, Proprietor Sheikh Suppliers and Contractors while as Weigher has been identified Tajamul Hassan Shah, son of Ghulam Hassan Shah of Dharmuna Budgam,” the statement added.

On spot, there were several other drivers available, who transport food-grain for FCI. They were examined and it came to surface that all the drivers are forced to pay bribe before their trucks are unloaded, it said, adding that the drivers on spot complained that they are extorted money at all the Godowns of FCI especially Lethpora, and otherwise their trucks are not unloaded timely and are made to wait long.

“Almost all the drivers available on spot have paid some amount to the Godown owner and weigher by one or the other way. Some of the drivers showed mPay screen shots depicting transfer of Rs 3000 each into the bank account of accused Abdul Majeed,” the statement added.

It is pertinent to note that the Godown owner Ab Majeed Sheikh, is accused in Rs 30 crore fraud of J&K Bank. In connection with bank fraud, ACB has charge-sheeted the accused in ACB a case under FIR number 06/2019 of PS ACB Anantnag.

“Further investigation into the case is going on. Role of the other involved persons associated with FCI Godown Chandpora is being investigated. More arrests are expected to follow in the instant case,” the ACB said.

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