Bhubaneswar: The CBI on Wednesday registered five cases against Hindustan Aeronautics Limited’s (HAL) senior manager (Engine Division) Bhaben Maitra and some other employees based in Odisha for allegedly misappropriating funds to the tune of around Rs 13 crore.
Amid raging political storm over HAL’s exclusion from the Rafale deal, the defence PSU’s Koraput division was raided by CBI earlier on October 26, 2018. The central investigation agency had interrogated some HAL employees and raided 12 places in Sunabeda, including their offices and recovered incriminating document.
According to sources, Uday Kumar Raut, manager (vigilance) of HAL’s Engines Division in Koraput, Odisha, had lodged a complaint saying, an internal half-yearly audit had revealed that Maitra approved multiple payment vouchers for contractors without seeking the “requisite bills and work orders”.
The HAL authorities had given him financial power for issuing cheques to different agencies up to Rs 1 lakh a month but he allegedly misused his official position by disbursing funds fraudulently. Subsequently, the audit team had summoned the senior manager, but he did not respond and fled.
Three contractors, who had received the money through cheques, were apprehended after HAL authorities lodged a complaint with local police, which had also launched a search operation to nab Maitra.