LACCFED scam: Searches all over Kanpur,Lucknow

The probe has found that Katiyar,who enjoyed the status of state minister — being LACCFED chairman — had purchased properties and invested the money in the name of his PRO.

Written by Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: August 29, 2012 3:05 am

The probe has found that Katiyar,who enjoyed the status of state minister — being LACCFED chairman — had purchased properties and invested the money in the name of his PRO

The Special Investigation Bureau (SIB) of the Co-operative Cell of UP Police,this evening,began simultaneous searches at 11 places in Kanpur and five in Lucknow in connection with the alleged embezzlement of over Rs 50 crore of government fund meant for construction works in 2010-2011 by Labour and Construction Co-operative Federation (LACCFED).

Meanwhile,sources confirmed that the Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax department have also sought details from the SIB about the findings during the searches being conducted today. Co-operative Cell Director General (DG) Suvrat Tripathi said that the searches are on at the residences and some properties of former LACCFED chairman Sushil Katiyar and his then public relation officer (PRO) Praveen Singh in Kanpur.

Simultaneous searches are going on in Lucknow too in connection with the assets allegedly owned by former LACCFED Chief Engineer Gopal Sharan Srivastava and then accountant Anil Kumar Agrawal,Tripathi confirmed.

He also said that the teams are also verifying documents of some properties related to the Axis group of colleges in Kanpur owned by Raj Kushwaha who is a close friend of Katiyar. The SIB has information that Katiyar might have invested embezzled money in Kushwaha’s business.

The searches will continue till late in the night in Kanpur and Lucknow,the DG added.

He said that the ongoing investigation has found that Katiyar and his PRO allegedly have earned several crores of rupees through embezzlement.

The probe has also found that Katiyar,who enjoyed the status of a state minister — being LACCFED chairman — had purchased properties and invested the money in the name of his PRO Praveen Singh,his friends and relatives in Jhansi,Allahabad,Agra,Noida and Delhi. The process to corroborate Katiyar’s links with these assets is already in progress,the DG said.

A case alleging financial irregularities was lodged at Hussainganj police station of Lucknow in February on a complaint of LACCFED general manager,Administration and Finance,P N Singh Yadav. Former chief engineer Gopal Sharan Srivastava and accountant Anil Kumar Agrawal were named in the complaint.

The previous government had transferred the investigation to SIB,but the investigation began only this month. The SIB had arrested then general manager,administration,Pankaj Tripathi on August 9,while the chief engineer surrendered before the court a few days ago. The accountant is yet to be arrested.

The scam came to light in January when the general manager found that Rs 12.36 crore had been withdrawn from the agency’s account while the details of the projects on which the money was supposed to be spent were not available. The money was issued through bearer cheques in the names of 16 LACCFED engineers between October 2010 and October 2011.

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