New scam: Ambedkar Corpn MD’s e-office letterhead, digital sign forged

The applicants must be residents of Karnataka and should be in the age group of 21 to 50.
Representative image
Representative image

BENGALURU: The e-office letterhead and the digital signature of the Managing Director of Dr BR Ambedkar Development Corporation Ltd have been forged. Sources said it has been done to show that the MD had sanctioned a subsidy of Rs 5 lakh each under the ‘Airavatha’ scheme to 17 beneficiaries of Scheduled Caste in Yadgir district.

The Airavatha scheme was introduced to enable educated and unemployed Scheduled Caste youth get a start as owners of tourist taxis in collaboration with Ola/Uber/Meru and help them earn an income. The corporation was providing a subsidy up to Rs 5 lakh per beneficiary.

The applicants must be residents of Karnataka and should be in the age group of 21 to 50. They must have a light vehicle driving licence, and an annual income of less than Rs 5 lakh. The scheme was in force from 2018 to 2020. However, a fake sanction order dated April 3, 2024 was issued to the manager of the office of the corporation in Yadgir using the forged e-office letterhead and digital signature.

The incident flagged concerns as the scheme had been stopped. To check the authenticity of the sanction, one Siddalingareddy forwarded the order to the staff handling the scheme at the corporation’s head office at VV Tower in Bengaluru. Suspecting forgery, the staff informed higher authorities and action was initiated to find out who was behind the forgery, sources said.

The forgery is a scam created to collect money from innocent ‘beneficiaries’ whose names have been mentioned on the fake letterhead, making them believe that they have been approved for the subsidy.

An official in the corporation said MD Praveen P Bagewadi has filed a complaint with Vidhana Soudha police who registered an FIR and the investigation is under way.

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The New Indian Express