The CBI has registered a case in connection with illegal transfer of Rs 100 crore from a Jharkhand government account in State Bank of India for a midday meal programme to a private builder, officials said on Thursday.
The agency carried out searches at the official premises of the accused and the company Bhanu Construction in Ranchi on Wednesday, officials said. The FIR was registered against the company, its partners Sanjay Kumar Tiwari and Suresh Kumar and Ajay Oraon, former deputy manager of the bank’s Hatia branch who has now been suspended.
The FIR, registered on the complaint of an SBI officer, alleged that a deputy manager (Business Development Department) of the bank “dishonestly and by abusing his official position” transferred over Rs 100 crore from the account of “Rajya Madhyan Bhojan Pradhikaran” to Bhanu Construction. “On August 05, 2017, State Bank of India, Hatia Branch received six debit advices from the…Government of Jharkhand for transfer of Rs 120.31 crore from their Saving Bank Account to multiple accounts maintained with different banks, including State Bank of India,” it alleged.
The FIR said Rs 20.29 crore was to be transferred to SBI and Rs 100.01 crore was to be transferred to other bank accounts. For bulk transfer through real time gross settlement andnational electronic fund transfer (RTGS/NEFT), Rs 100.01 crore was debited from the account of Jharkhand Rajya Madhyan Bhojan Pradhikaran and was temporarily parked in office/suspense account of the branch for processing of the transfer to various accounts.
“Due to failure in uploading, the entire amount of Rs 100.01 crore got returned to the office and suspense account of the Branch,” it said. Instead of crediting back Rs 100.01 crore to the account of Jharkhand Rajya Madhyan Bhojan Pradhikaran from office account, it alleged that then deputy manager Oraon transferred the amount to the current account of Bhanu Construction.
Tiwari and Kumar dishonestly transferred the amount to their various accounts. It was utilised and misappropriated by keeping it as a liquid security or margin for the credit facility extended to them by Axis Bank Ltd, HDFC Bank, SREI Equipment Finance Ltd and Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Company Ltd, the FIR alleged.
According to the FIR, the SBI managed to recover Rs 76.29 crore on November 20, 2017 from various accounts with different banks but Rs 23.28 crore could not recovered, “resulting in loss to the bank and corresponding gain for Bhanu Construction”. The agency has booked the accused under charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating and under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.