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CBI files chargesheet against 12 in Himachal scholarship scam

The central agency has named six former officials of the directorate of higher education, five officials of KC Group of Institutions, Una and a Central Bank of India head cashier in the case pertaining to irregularities in disbursal of pre-matric and post-matric scholarships.

By: Express News Service | Shimla | Updated: March 30, 2020 11:11:45 pm
After conducting searches at 21 private institutions, the role of the accused had come to light. (Representational Image)

The CBI filed a chargesheet against 12 people on Monday in connection with a Rs 220-crore scholarship scam in Himachal Pradesh.

The central agency has named six former officials of the directorate of higher education, five officials of KC Group of Institutions, Una and a Central Bank of India head cashier in the case pertaining to irregularities in disbursal of pre-matric and post-matric scholarships for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and minorities, officials said.

The then officials of the Directorate of Higher Education — Arvind Rajta, Mala Mehta, Shriram Sharma, Surinder Mohan Kanwar, Ashok Kumar, Virender Kumar — have been named as accused in the charge sheet.

The then officials of K C Group of Institutions — Saroj Sharma, B S Sandhu, Hitesh Gandhi, Prem Pal Gandhi, Kiran Choudhary — and Surinder Pal Singh, who was the head cashier at the Central Bank of India, Nawanshahr, Punjab, have also been named.

The education officials include a former assistant director and five former superintendents while the private institution officials include the officiating principal, two campus directors and two chairperson-cum-owners of the KC Group of Institutions at Pandoga in Una district.

The CBI had registered the case in May last year for alleged irregularities in the disbursal of pre-matric and post-matric scholarships to the tune of Rs 220 crore. The alleged irregularities took place between 2013-14 and 2016-17 during the disbursal of scholarships under various state and central government sponsored schemes for SC/ST/OBC students by the department of higher education. During investigation, it came to light that the income and caste certificates of certain students were not genuine.

On the request by the state government and following a notification by the central government, the CBI registered a case under sections 409, 419, 465, 466 and 471 of the Indian Penal Code and began investigations, agency officials said.

After conducting searches at 21 private institutions, the role of the accused had come to light.

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