VELLORE: An accountant working for the Vaniyambadi Municipality has been arrested by the District Crime Branch (DCB) on Monday, allegedly in collusion with two others for siphoning off `2.48 crore from funds allocated for construction of sumps under the Combined Water Supply Scheme (CWSS). The police have also launched a manhunt against two others in the case..
The accountant, in collusion with his assistant and possibly the manager of the municipality, allegedly deposited the amount into their personal bank accounts instead of the municipality’s account.
An amount of `2.48 crore was allocated under the Combined Water Supply Scheme between July 26, 2013 and May 30, 2014, said a police officer.
The misappropriation of the fund came to light in the middle of 2014 when “cheques issued to Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board for the construction of sumps bounced due to ‘insufficient funds’ in the municipality’s account.
An inquiry revealed that the duo had allegedly diverted the funds to their personal accounts instead of depositing it in the local body’s account,” said an official in the municipality.
The former Engineer and Commissioner (in charge) of Vaniyambadi Municipality, A Ravi took the issue to the notice of the Commissionerate of Municipal Administration.
The Commissionerate suspended the duo from service on October 27 last year for malpractice. After their suspensions, the amount of money stolen was recovered and deposited into the municipality’s account.
Ravi had also filed a complaint with the District Crime Branch and on Sunday, the District Crime Branc filed a case under sections 120 (b), 420, 467, 468, 471, and 477 of the IPC for misappropriation of government funds against the accountant Muralikanthan, the assistant accountant, Gurusrinivasan and the then manager of the municipality, Suresh.
So far there is no evidence pointing to the then manager, Suresh, colluding with the accountants, but Suresh has been charged for failing to check that the money was properly deposited.
Police have issued a summons for Suresh, who is presently working in Dharmapuri district, for interrogation. Police is on the lookout for Gurusrinivasan, who is the prime accused in the case.Muralikanthan has been remanded to the Vellore Central Prison for Men under judicial custody.