Chandigarh: The Punjab Vigilance Bureau, during its ongoing drive against corruption registered a criminal and corruption case against the officials/employees of the Food and Civil Supplies Department Punjab and concerned procurement agencies including five contractors on charges of allotting transportation tenders for grain markets of Jaito and Kotakpura in Faridkot district having fake registration numbers of vehicles.

Disclosing this here today, the spokesperson of the Vigilance Bureau (VB) said after investigating the allegations made in the complaint under section 420, 409, 467, 468, 471, 120-B of I.P.C. and under section 7, 8, 12, 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, has been registered against Rishu Mittal, Pawan Kumar, Vishu Mittal, Prem Chand and Yogesh Gupta (All contractors) at Police Station Vigilance Bureau Range Ferozepur. The role of the remaining accused and other suspects would be probed during the further investigations, he added.

Giving more details, he said during the probe, it was found that the above said contractors had provided fake registration numbers of vehicles in the lists attached to the transportation tenders submitted in the year 2019-20, which was in clear violation of note 5 in sub-para of clause-5 in the tender policy of the same year. Hence during verification of the facts in the tenders, the district tender committee of Food and Civil Supplies department should have rejected the technical bid of the concerned contractors which was not done. The investigation clearly shows a collusion between the concerned officials/employees and the contractors to allot the tenders, he said.

The spokesperson further informed that the registration numbers of many vehicles recorded in the gate passes issued by the procurement agencies during the transportation of food grains by the above said contractors belong to motorcycles/mini buses as the goods could not be transported on such vehicles.

During the investigation of registration numbers of said vehicles as well as details of the quantity of food grains mentioned in these gate passes, it was a prima facie case of fake reporting and embezzlement of food grains.

He added that the concerned officers/employees of the department as well as procurement agencies had paid the bills to the contractors on the basis of such gate passes without verifying them. In this regard, the transportation of food grains had been shown on the fake documents.

He added that in this way, apart from the said contractors, the concerned officials/employees of department of Food Supply and Consumer Affairs, Faridkot and the concerned officials/employees of the respective procurement agencies have in connived with each other in the allotment of tenders for transportation of food grains from grain markets.

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