Demonetisation, announced last year by the government, ‘aided’ the CBI in its anti-corruption drive, exposing officials and individuals hoarding illicit cash, according to CBI Director Alok Verma. After the note ban was announced, the agency managed to expose Rs 396 crore of alleged slush funds in 84 cases registered by it relating to illicit currency exchange that took place after the move, CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said on Wednesday.
Dayal said the CBI director had given top priority to the probe of demonetisation-related cases and directed the team probing them to complete investigation in a time-bound manner. He had also issued directions to ensure that all those guilty of malpractices were brought to book, he said.
“Demonetisation has significantly aided the CBI in its anti-corruption drive by taking action against the corrupt public servants and individuals hoarding the illegal cash,” Dayal said quoting CBI Director Alok Verma.
In the 84 cases, which include seven preliminary enquiries, the agency had so far arrested 21 public servants and 26 private persons out of 307 accused (including public servants and private persons) found involved, he said. The cases relate to fraudulent exchange of demonetised notes at commercial banks, co-operative banks, post offices, railways and insurance company, he said.
“All branches of the CBI across the country were actively involved in checking corrupt practices being undertaken by unscrupulous persons in connivance with certain public servants and private persons to either illegally convert or deposit high denomination demonetised currency notes,” he said.
The CBI claimed it was ensured that every information related to such violation of laws should be entertained and examined and if required, cases should be registered.
“Demonetised and new currency worth crores and large number of incriminating documents have been recovered so far. Chargesheet has been filed in 12 cases and regular department action has also been recommended in a few cases,” he said.
The agency received 92 complaints from the general public which reported such illegal exchanges in various organisations, it said.
“Some private individuals were nabbed with huge amounts of new currency. Since there were restrictions on individuals in terms of withdrawals of new currency, investigation is to find out how they could come in possession of such amounts,” he said.