December 22, 2021 11:43:35 am
A railway engineer in Bihar has been booked and suspended, for trying to illegally sell off a vintage steam engine as “scrap”, a senior official said on Tuesday.
According to Alok Agrawal, DRM of Samastipur Division under East Central Railway, an FIR was registered on the previous day against engineer Rajiv Ranjan Jha and six others at Banmankhi in Purnea district
The matter involves a metre gauge engine stationed in Purnea for public display which Jha was caught trying to get dismantled on December 14 with a gas cutter which was being handled by helper Sushil Yadav.
When a sub-inspector deployed at the Railway Protection Force (RPF) outpost, M M Rehman, came to enquire, the engineer brandished a letter claiming that the Divisional Mechanical Engineer had ordered the scrap material from the engine to be taken to the diesel locomotive shed nearby.
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Jha also wrote a memo confirming the same to Rehman before leaving the spot with scrap material laden on a pick up van.
The lid was blown off the racket, the following day, when RPF personnel Sangita brought to the notice of her superiors that the scrap had not reached the diesel shed.
Further investigation revealed that no order for transportation of scrap had been issued and the letter which Jha was armed with, was fake.
“Evidently, Jha had struck an illegal scrap deal. He, along with Yadav, is on the run. They will be tracked down by RPF and face legal action as per Railway Property Act,” said the DRM.
The RPF sub inspector posted at the diesel shed, Virendra Dwivedi, has also been suspended for being lax.
Meanwhile, B P Mandal, Inspector, RPF, Purnea, informed that the hydra crane used in the illegal activity has been seized from the town’s Gulabbag area.
He also said raids were being conducted to nab Jha, including his residence in Patna where his wife works as a nurse.
Efforts are on to trace the material that might have been transported as scrap and the dealer whom Jha and his accomplices were doing business with.
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