Fraudster Arrested For Misappropriating Rs 3.49 Crore Govt Subsidy In Odisha

Bhubaneswar: The Economic Offenses Wing (EOW) of the Odisha Crime Branch on Tuesday arrested a man of Bargarh district for allegedly misappropriating government subsidy worth Rs 3.49 crore in agriculture equipment meant for farmers of Western Odisha.

The accused, Kamaljeet Singh, was forwarded to the SDJM court, which remanded him to judicial custody after rejecting his bail plea.

According to EOW sources, a case was registered on April 23 on the basis of a complaint lodged by Rigin Bennet, Manager (Public Relations) of M/s Redlands Ashlyn Motors PLC, Thrissur, Kerala. The firm alleged that the accused had managed to obtain registration from the Agriculture Department of the Odisha government for selling its farm equipment through forged documents.

Investigation revealed that Harpal Singh, who is the dealer of the company, and his brother Kamaljeet Singh misappropriated Rs.3.5 crore government subsidy by uploading fake engine/chassis number along with photographs of beneficiaries and machines, claiming to have supplied 281 rice transplanter machines to farmers of Sambalpur, Sonepur and Bargarh, on Direct Benefit Transport (DBT) portal fraudulently.

The EOW also found that the machines were never sold.

Harpal had uploaded his joint photographs with beneficiaries and fake machines on DBT portals to deceive the government. The photographs were taken by Kamaljeet.

Once the photographs were uploaded, the subsidy ranging from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh was credited to the account of 278 beneficiary farmers amounting to Rs 3.49 crore.

Kamaljeet and his brother Harpal then lured them to withdraw the subsidy by paying them Rs 3,000 to 5,000 of the total amount.

The EOW has frozen Rs 1.92 crore in different accounts of the accused and their firms.

The investigation is underway to recover the remaining amount, the sources added.

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