Lottery Case: CBI to Approach Vigilance Wings of Other States
The CBI probing the lottery scam has decided to approach the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption wings of Maharashtra, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Andhra Pradesh for investigating the source of the unaccountable money possessed by those government officials in these states who are linked to the scam.
CBI officials said they had collected the statements of the officials, who with the assistance of Santiago Martin and his lottery distributing company, laundered black money.According to the CBI, since they are just investigating the lottery scam which is about the involvement of Santiago Martin and his firm, they cannot register case against state government officials of these states.
“The method of laundering black money by 72 officials was very simple. Of the 202 lucky draws on the ticket sold in Kerala, only three were from Kerala. The rest of 199 winners were from other states. Of these, 72 were government officials. Unsold winning tickets were used for this purpose. In disguise of money from lottery draws, these persons turned unaccountable money with them into accountable one. Each lottery draw winner received around Rs15 lakh. After paying commission to middlemen having connection with Santiago Martin, they got prize-winning tickets.
“The officials might have received unaccountable money through bribe or some illegal ways, which has to be investigated by competent authorities in each state,” the CBI officials said.They said the statements of these government officials would be handed over to the Vigilance Department of the respective states.
As per the CBI charge sheet in the case, the tainted officials were from Road Transport Department, BMC, Irrigation Department, Maharashtra Pradhan Mantri Grameen Sadak Yojana, Deputy Commissioners of Land and Estate Department and department conducting surveys and town planning.
“After filing the charge sheet, the second step is prosecute state government employees who misused these lotteries.
“We cannot register case against these officials as they are officials of the state government. For this, we require approval from these states. Else these states should recommend us to launch investigation against these officials. We would hand over the evidence against these officials collected during the probe to the respective Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Unit in these states,” they said.