J&K HC asks police to complete probe and file charges within 3 months
Fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 20 lakh against non-existent works in PHE Division Handwara
Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Friday directed the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Crime Branch, Kashmir to ensure completion of investigation and file challan before the court of law into the withdrawal of more than Rs 20 lakh against non-existent works in by engineers and other officials in PHE Division Handwara.
Justices Ali Mohammad Magrey and Vinod Chatterji Koul directed “the SSP Crime Branch, Kashmir, shall ensure completion of investigation and filing of challan before the competent court of law, if not already filed, within a period of three months from today.”
Perusing a status report by the SSP that several officers fraudulently and dishonestly withdrew an amount of Rs 20,34,634 against non-existent works in the PHE Division Handwara, the court directed “the Commissioner/Secretary Jal Shakti Department (PHE), to take departmental proceedings to its logical conclusion by adherence to rules and regulations in vogue and pass appropriate orders”.
The court further directed the Chief Engineer, PHE department, Kashmir to ensure that safe drinking water is supplied to the areas of PHE Division, Handwara, which is not covered in terms of the schemes in vogue.
The court was apprised by the concerned government lawyers that some of the accused officers were arrested and placed under suspension.
The status report also said that the Finance department vide letter dated 27th of October, 2016 has also directed the Director General Audit and Inspection to conduct special audit of the PHE Division Handwara from 2006 onwards.
Status report filed by the Commissioner/Secretary Irrigation and Flood Control Department, revealed that the inquiry has been expedited into the case and is in the process of conclusion.
A public interest litigation sought investigation into the scandal with a command to Executive Engineer (M&P) Division Srinagar to submit the details of materials issued to the Division for execution of the works as also a command to the Executive Engineer (Handwara).
It also wanted putting the utilization of the material with procedural formalities into the public domain.
An FIR was registered in to the 2014 into the case at Police Station Handwara and thereafter the case was transferred to Crime Branch, Srinagar.
The court had also sought status report about the departmental enquiry initiated against the delinquent officials.