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Sugarcane scam: accused held from Maharashtra

The Vadodara Police have arrested one of the former chairmen of the Vadodara District Sugarcane Grower’s Cooperative Union for his alleged involvement in the Gandhara sugarcane scam.

Vasant Rao Patil was one of the chairmen of Vadodara District Sugarcane Grower’s Cooperative Union when the Gandhara scam came to light

The Vadodara Police have arrested one of the former chairmen of the Vadodara District Sugarcane Grower’s Cooperative Union (VDSGCU) for his alleged involvement in the Gandhara sugarcane scam.

Vasant Rao Patil was arrested from Thane in Maharashtra on Monday. Bodeli Circle Inspector V I Patel,who is investigating the case,said Patil held the key to mismanagement of the accounts of the Union and his arrest was crucial in the Rs 18-crore scam.

“A team from Karjan,where the complaint against the main accused Jaykant Patel,a former chairman of VDSGCU and Devendra Thakkar is registered,went to Maharashtra. Along with Patil,Patel and Thakkar who are wanted in the case,nearly 30 members of the cooperative have been named,” added Inspector Patel.

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The Maharashtra Police apprehended Patil after informed by their Vadodara counterparts that his close relatives were residents of Thane.

According to the police,Patil was the managing director and was promoted as chairman when the scam took place in 2005 and 2007. The Registrar of Audits had lodged a complaint in October this year against Patel,Thakkar and Patil after the Department of Sugar,Government of Gujarat,asked for a re-audit of the accounts of VDSGCU.

According to the members of Chambers of Commerce,the sugarcane scam accused manipulated the measurements at various levels of production and supply,while lack of an open tender system also helped the accused to make changes in accounting ledgers.

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According to police officials in Karjan and Bodeli,where the complaints are filed against the accused in the scam,Patil’s arrest was crucial for the investigations. Meanwhile,Patel and Thakkar have moved anticipatory bail applications against their arrest.

First published on: 17-11-2009 at 04:50 IST
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