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Probe in Gupta bribery case makes headway

NT NETWORK

Panaji

The Lokayukta has received a letter from the Union home ministry on its request to depute a senior CBI officer to conduct investigation into the allegations of corruption against two high-ranking police officials who served in Goa – former deputy inspector-general of police  Vimal Gupta and former director general of police Muktesh Chander.

The Lokayukta had made a request to the Union home ministry on April 9 this year to depute  a CBI officer – not below the rank of SP – to investigate corruption charges against the  high-ranking police officials.

The Union home ministry also forwarded the letter to the CBI director. The ombudsman is now waiting for the reply from the CBI director on or before the next hearing in the bribery case, which has been  fixed for  August 5.

On the basis of a reference made by the state government, the Lokayukta initiated proceedings to probe the allegations of corruption against the former DIG, who  had allegedly demanded a bribe for closing a departmental enquiry against woman police sub-inspector Devyani Ambekar.

But the government failed to depute the nodal officer even after repeated request to assist in investigation.

Putting the blame for the rot on the ‘lackadaisical attitude’ of the state government, Lokayukta Justice (retd) P K Misra said the probe into the role of very high-ranking police officers could not be done fairly.

As a result, the Lokayukta found it to be an appropriate step under Section 8(5) of the Goa Lokayukta Act to request the central government asking to depute a senior CBI official to assist in the probe the bribery case.

The Lokayukta during its enquiry had recorded statements of Chander,  Gupta, SP Bosco George, Devyani Ambekar and police constable Chetan Morajkar who had been posted at the office of the then DIG at the police headquarters.

A complaint was filed by former ACB superintendent of police Bosco George, who had investigated the allegations against Gupta.

The matter was referred to the Chief Secretary, who is the chief vigilance officer. And following his permission, the ACB had registered an FIR.

On January 5, 2018,  the anti-corruption branch  of the directorate of vigilance had registered a first information report  against Gupta, Devyani Ambekar and her husband, and police constable Morajkar in the bribery case.

In oral submissions made before George, Morajkar had said that  Devyani Ambekar’s husband, who was his neighbour, had requested him to get in touch with Gupta for helping  close  the  enquiry against the woman police sub-inspector.

Morajkar had claimed  that he introduced  Devyani Ambekar’s husband to Gupta, who  showed his index finger, indicating payment of a bribery of Rs 1 lakh for closure of the enquiry.

This tacit bribery demand was conveyed to Devyani Ambekar, who arranged Rs 40,000 as the first installment and the balance was to be paid later.

Morajkar had maintained  that the amount was paid by him to Gupta.

However, Devyani Ambekar refused to confirm Morajkar’s claim, feigning ignorance of the same.

However, Morajkar in his statement before the Lokayukta denied of taking any money from Devyani Ambekar’s  husband  to help in closing the enquiry.

He had alleged that he was assaulted by Chander in his cabin in the presence of Gupta and George over the allegation that he had accepted money from Devyani Ambekar’s husband.

Devyani Ambekar also denied of offering any bribe to the former DIG through Morjkar.  

She said that Morajkar was unknown to her and that he was known only to her husband. 

With no any evidence to prove the bribery allegation, the ACB in February this year had filed a closure report before the special court, Panaji.

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