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CBI to file FIR against scribe, Rlys officers in posting, extortion racket

The CBI has also carried out searches at the premises of two senior railway officers in connection with this case.

Mahesh Kumar, former member of Rly Board was arrested last year Mahesh Kumar, former member of Rly Board was arrested last year

A probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has linked senior railway officers with a journalist, who runs a little-known fortnightly magazine, in allegedly running an extortion and transfer-posting racket.

According to sources in the CBI, investigation and telephone interception of chief editor of Paripurna Railway Samachar, Suresh Tripathi, reveals that he was in constant touch with senior railway officials, including Mahesh Kumar, and alleged details of payment for transfers were also recovered.

This case is a follow-up of last year’s investigation into the alleged transfer and posting racket in railway, which led to the arrest of Mahesh Kumar, then member (staff) of Railway Board, and Vijay Singla, nephew of the then railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal. However, the sources said the two cases were not interlinked.

The CBI has also carried out searches at the premises of two senior railway officers in connection with this case — Onkar Singh, chief administrative officer, and Sanjay Kumar Mishra, chief engineer (construction), both from North Eastern Railway. The CBI, which had earlier registered a preliminary enquiry, is now planning to file an FIR naming Tripathi and senior railway officials.

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Sources said the lifestyle of Tripathi, whose publication has a circulation of 2,000 copies, sold at Rs 5 a piece, brought him under the agency’s scanner. The CBI claims to have several hours of telephone interception to prove that Tripathi was in touch with railway officers, who gave him information about alleged irregularities which he used to blackmail officers.

The CBI alleges that railway officers extended him railway’s infrastructure facilities and allegedly used to give advertisement, although his publication was blacklisted. “He is specifically more successful with dishonest officers who like to coverup the tracks by paying money,” said a source.

The CBI also alleges that Tripathi made false claim to take newsprint from the government impersonating to be a publisher of repute, and extracted advertisement from railway’s official advertisement funds, besides from regional offices where he allegedly took favours from senior officers.

First published on: 03-05-2014 at 03:17:23 am
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