New Delhi: A retired income tax department official has been sentenced to two years in jail by a Delhi court for accepting bribe from a man, who was seeking early refund of excess tax paid by him.
Special CBI Judge MR Sethi held Pitampura resident Mohan Das Gupta, who was a clerk in the Income Tax Department here, guilty of accepting bribe from a tax payee by abusing his official position and conspiring with his senior official.
The court also said the offences committed by the "white collared section of the society cannot be viewed lightly. Suppression of corruption is a matter of acute necessity when dark forces endeavour to institutionalise corruption itself."
"...Such a legislative insistence (punishment for public servants indulging in corrupt practices) is reflection of Parliament`s resolve to meet corruption cases with very strong hand and to give signals of deterrence as the most pivotal feature of sentencing of corrupt public servants," the court said while imposing a fine of Rs 30,000 on 64-year-old Gupta.
The court had also framed charges against income tax officer (ITO) HK Nahar, who died during the trial.
The case was filed by CBI in June 2005 on the complaint of Uday Shanker Mishra, who had gone to the office of Income Tax (IT) department at ITO to claim Rs 1,85,343 as the refund of excess tax paid by him for the assessment year 2004-05.
Mishra had said that he had also sent a letter to the IT commissioner seeking early refund of the amount. He had said that in June 2005, he had gone to the concerned ward where he met Gupta, who told him that the case would not be settled without payment of Rs 25,000.
He had also told CBI that when he met Nahar, he too did not agree to settle the claim without payment of Rs 25,000 as bribe which was later fixed at Rs 23,000.
Mishra had contacted the CBI and a trap was laid by the agency during which Gupta was caught accepting the amount from the complainant and a case was filed against him.
Gupta, in his defence, had said he was falsely implicated in the case and also claimed that even if the case of the CBI is taken at its face value, the amount accepted by him was to be passed on to his senior Nahar and was not for his use only.
The prosecutor, however, had sought maximum punishment for Gupta saying the complainant was well-known to the convict and if his greed did not stop him from extracting money from his acquaintance, it can very well be imagined as to what he would have done to others.