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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Pirated NCERT books case: Main accused absconding, warrant issued against suspended BJP leader

The police said they will soon announce a reward for information leading to the arrest of each of the absconding accused.

Written by Amit Sharma | Meerut | Updated: September 2, 2020 8:18:35 am
hair transplant, Richfeel Health and Beauty Pvt Limited, case against Richfeel Health and Beauty Pvt Limited, chandigarh hair transplant case, chandigarh city newsThe company was served a legal notice on August 12.

Meerut police on Tuesday said that they have got a non-bailable warrant issued by a local court against suspended BJP leader Sanjeev Gupta and his nephew Sachin in connection with the illegal printing of NCERT books.

Last month, police had seized pirated NCERT books worth Rs 60 crore from warehouses in Meerut and Amroha.

“We have secured an NBW (non-bailable warrant) against the absconding accused to ensure that they could not approach the court to evade arrest. We are hopeful of getting a breakthrough in the case,” Senior Superintendent of Police (Meerut) Ajay Sahni said.

Since the raid at a Meerut warehouse on August 21, four of the eight people named in the FIR have been arrested.

“We are conducting raids at various places to arrest Sanjeev Gupta and his nephew Sachin. We will also announce cash rewards for any information leading to their arrests if they continue to evade police,” said Anand Prakash Mishra, in-charge of Transport Nagar police station.

In an email to Meerut police, the NCERT has told them that it has not done any business with Sanjeev Gupta.

Notably, Gupta had earlier told media that he had an agreement with the NCERT and he had printed the books “legally”.

Meanwhile, the NCERT has also formed a five-member committee to ascertain how the books printed by an unregistered publisher were distributed in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Delhi.

The Income and Trade Tax authorities have also served notices to Gupta for alleged tax evasion, while the Meerut Development Authority (MDA) has raised questions over the legality of the plots where the warehouses and printing press stood.

“There are a number of discrepancies in the payment of SGST (State Goods and Services Tax) and CGST. This is why we have served a notice to them. We have also sought details of the total state and central tax paid from July 2017 to 2020 during which fake NCERT books worth Rs 120 crore were published,” said Shashi Bhushan Singh, Additional Commissioner, SGST.

However, Opposition has questioned the police for failing to arrest Sanjeev Gupta, the former Meerut district BJP vice-president, accusing the government of trying to protect him. “We are surprised at the inefficiency of the Meerut police which have failed to arrest the fugitive even after 10 days of registering the FIR. The laxity of the Meerut police shows that they are operating under pressure from the BJP leadership to not act against Sanjeev Gupta,” Avnish Kajla, Meerut Congress unit chief, said, adding that his party wants the CBI to probe the case.

Opposition parties like the Samajwadi Party and Rashtriya Lok Dal have held protests in Meerut demanding the arrest of the former BJP district unit vice-president.

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