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Defence Ministry officials convicted for graft

PTI | Last Updated: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 - 19:42

New Delhi: Two former Defence Ministry officials and a retired Army man were on Tuesday convicted by a Delhi court for causing a loss of over Rs 7.3 crore to state exchequer by inducing payment for the material which were never supplied to the Ministry from 1994-97.

Special CBI judge JPS Malik held guilty Lt Col (Retd) P R S Rao, Deputy Director in office of Deputy Director General of Ordinance Services (Inventory and Budget Section), A K Sharma, the then Assistant Audit Officer in the office of Director General of Audit (Defence Services) and IB Uppal who retired from Indian Army in 1991.

The three convicts had caused a loss of Rs 7,31,95,480 to the government.

The trio were among 12 persons booked by CBI in 1998 for causing wrongful loss to the government by clearing bogus bills against which no consignment was ever demanded or received.

Barring the three convicts, the nine other accused were senior auditors, account officers and clerks in the office of Controller of Defence Accounts (CDA) and they were discharged from the case in 2005 by the court.

The court noted that Uppal had retired from the Army in 1991 but did not surrender his identity card so that he could gain easy access to defence establishments.

He then raised bogus bills by posing as the proprietor of certain firms like M/s SriKrishna enterprises, Rishi Enterprises and the bills were forwarded by Rao to the concerned section of CDA for clearance, it noted.

Convict Sharma, who was the Assistant Audit Officer during 1994-95, came to know about the illegal activities of Rao, and accepted illegal gratification of over Rs 9 lakh from him for not disclosing about the cheating.

The court convicted Uppal for cheating, criminal conspiracy under the IPC and also under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Rao has also been convicted under similar offences.

Sharma has been convicted under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The court will hear arguments on the quantum of sentence on October 25.

First Published: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 - 19:42

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