2 used fake software, biometric data to divert rations, arrested
Surat: Two fair price shop owners were arrested by the Crime Branch here for allegedly diverting subsidised grains by using a duplicate software and unauthorised biometric data of beneficiaries.
Police said that Babubhai Boriwal (53) and Sampatlal Shah (61), were arrested on Friday and were sent to police custody for five days.
Explaining the modus operandi, Crime Branch Inspector BN Dave said, "The state government had in April 2016 launched the Annapurna Yojana under the National Food Security Act-2013. Fair price shops, renamed as Pandit Deendayal grahak bhandar, were computerised so that subsidised food items reached the actual beneficiaries."
Dave said that fair price shops were supposed to use an application called E-FPS, provided by the government, with a databank of beneficiaries fed into it.
He added, "As part of this, fair price shop owners were given a username and password to access the biometric data bank of beneficiaries to create an electronic record of beneficiaries availing subsidised grains from their shops."
"The beneficiary had to provide his finger print, details of his ration card and UID (Aadhaar) numbers to match the data fed into the computer. This would generate a slip on the basis of which he was given subsidised ration every month," Dave said.
The arrested duo, he said, used a duplicate software and obtained a data bank of beneficiaries from an unknown source.