Lottery Scandal: CBI Files Closure Report Before CJM - The New Indian Express

Lottery Scandal: CBI Files Closure Report Before CJM

Published: 17th December 2013 10:19 AM

Last Updated: 17th December 2013 10:19 AM

The Thiruvananthapuram unit of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), probing the lottery scam, filed another closure report in the case before the Ernakulam Chief Judicial Magistrate on Monday. The CBI filed the closure report stating that there is no evidence to establish that the tickets sold by Megha Distributors were illegal.

The agency has asked the court to close the case which was registered at Ayarkunnam police station in Kottayam district on January 15, 2010. The accused persons in the case are Sivagurunathan, 32, of Tamil Nadu, Satheesh Kumar alias Sasi, 28, of Kottayam, Jayakumar, 39, of Kollam, A Sakthivel, 46, of Tamil Nadu, John Kennedy, 47, of Tamil Nadu, Santiago Martin, 51, of Tamil Nadu and N Jayamurughan, 44, of Tamil Ndau. The case was registered under IPC sections 34 and 420, Lottery Regulation Act and Kerala Paper Lottery (Regulation) Act.

The CBI, in its closure report, stated that lottery tickets, including the seized ones, were printed as per valid printing orders of Bhutan and Sikkim Governments and dispatched to Megha Distributors as per the agreement between Future Gaming Solutions India Pvt Ltd and the respective governments, on the basis of release orders issued by the respective governments. The lottery tickets, including the seized ones, were sold by agents in the state after remitting necessary taxes in advance to the state government. There was no evasion of tax detected or traced either by the Kerala Police or by the CBI during the course of the probe.

Sikkim and Bhutan Governments had issued certificates mentioning that Megha Distributors was the main stockist for the sale of their lotteries in Kerala and for it, tax amount was already paid to the Commercial Taxes Department of the state. John Kennedy of Megha Distributors had registered himself with the Commercial Taxes Department as promoter of Sikkim and Bhutan lotteries.

John Kennedy had submitted statements of weekly lottery tickets to the Assistant Commissioner, Commercial Taxes Department, for the draw of lotteries from January 1 to 31, 2010 . He also paid `6.51 crore as advance tax for the 93 draws to be held during this period.The CBI submitted that investigation into the cases was conclusive and no evidence was provided by the state to show forgery of the tickets or of loss to state Exchequer.

Now, the CBI has filed a report before the Ernakulam Chief Judicial Magistrate, recommending closure of 24 of the 32 cases registered in the lottery scam. The state government had filed objection petition over the CBI’s decision regarding closing of the cases at the Ernakulam Chief Judicial Magistrate court, stating that the CBI’s probe was imperfect.

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