BERHAMPUR: Officials of Berhampur Vigilance division on Wednesday nabbed a cop with Rs 6 lakh bribe money which he had taken to give protection to illegal ganja farms in Boudh district.Apart from the cash, a pistol was also seized from the possession of Harekrushna Sahu who is a constable in the district voluntary force (DVF) and also deployed in the special cell of Boudh SP. He was caught by the anti-graft agency officials near his government quarters within Baghiapada police limits in Boudh.
Vigilance sources said Sahu had demanded and accepted Rs 6 lakh to give protection to illegal ganja farms in Tenjabali village. Last week, he reportedly held a meeting at Tenjabali and asked ganja cultivators to pay him the money for protection of their farms. The aggrieved farmers informed the Vigilance about the matter following which a plan was prepared to trap Sahu.
As per the plan, the ganja cultivators asked Sahu to come to their village and collect the bribe. Unaware about the development, the cop reached Tenjabali, took the bribe and returned back to Baghiapada where the Vigilance officials nabbed him.
Sources said misusing his post in the DVF, Sahu was collecting bribe money from ganja dealers, cultivators and traders to facilitate their illegal trade. Locals alleged that Sahu even threatened to destroy the ganja farms if his demands were not met. He reportedly used to convene meetings in remote villages and took hefty amount of bribes from ganja dealers in the name of senior police officers.
Incidently, Sahu was suspended in the past for collecting money in the name of senior officers. However, he was later reinstated and deployed in the special cell of the Boudh SP eight months back.It is yet to be ascertained if senior officials are involved in the unholy nexus. Vigilance sources said simultaneous searches are being carried out at three locations of Sahu from disproportionate assets angle. The cop is also being interrogated to ascertain the source of his ill-gotten funds.