RAIPUR: Special Judge (Anti-Corruption Bureau) has issued arrest warrant against two IAS officer in Chhattisgarh in high profile public distribution scheme (PDS) rice scam after the supplementary challan was produced against them in the court.
The notices were earlier issued to both the IAS officers - Alok Shukla and Anil Tuteja, to produce themselves before the court but they didn't turn up following which the special judge Leena Das issued the arrested warrant.
The Chhattisgarh ACB probing the irregularities in supply of rice under the PDS presented a 25-page challan against both the bureaucrats along with the CDs, pen-drive, mobile phones and related documents before the court.
The charges included the supply of low-grade substandard rice and salt without evaluating the quality, were allowed to be transported for distribution and the illegal commissions were received in return. The two IAS officers were cited to have clandestine approval for it.
After the scam was exposed on February 12, 2015 during the ACB/EOW extensive raids in the civil supplies corporation headquarter and 28 other locations, the opposition Congress trained its gun against the Raman Singh government accusing it of being involved in rice scam cited to the tune of Rs 36000.
During the raids, the ACB recovered Rs 3.64 crore cash and some incriminating documents from nearly a dozen officials who were then arrested and sent to jail. After the ACB investigations, as many as 18 people were made the accused in the case. The state sought the Centre's approval, which was granted some two years ago, for prosecuting Shukla, the then food secretary and Tuteja who was Chhattisgarh State Civil Supplies Corporation managing director.
"Both the officers were issued the notices on December 4 and the court asked them to remain present when the ACB was to produce the charges against them", said the public prosecutor Yogendra Tamrakar. According to officials of the ACB, after the court's warrant both the officials will soon be arrested. So far there are 294 witnesses in the PDS scam case. Some days ago the court had cancelled the petition of Anil Tuteja who sought anticipatory bail.
The court proceedings in the given case will continue and statements of more witnesses will be recorded, he added. The PDS rice scam was raked-up by the Congress as one of the major issues during the recent election campaigns.