Millennium Post

Railgate: Court frames charges against Bansal’s nephew, nine others

In the railway bribery scam case which came to be known as railgate, a Delhi court has observed that ‘corruption in the country has reached unimaginable proportions’ while framing charges of criminal conspiracy and corruption against former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal’s nephew Vijay Singla, suspended railway board member Mahesh Kumar and eight other accused.

Special CBI judge Swarna Kanta Sharma framed charges against all the 10 accused in the scam section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC read with provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act and posted the matter for 25 August for commencement of recording of evidence in the case.

‘You (Singla) during the period between January 2013 to May 3, 2013 had accepted illegal gratification of Rs 89,68,000 from your co-accused Mahesh Kumar, N R Manjunath, Rahul Yadav, Sameer Sandhir, Sushil Daga, C V Venugopal and M V Murali Krishan for yourself or for any other person as a motive or reward for inducing by the exercise of your personal influence on any public servant for appointing your co-accused Mahesh Kumar as Member (electrical) in Railway Board and thereby you committed an offence under section 9 of Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 and within my cognisance,’ the judge said.

The next hearing is fixed on 25 August for recording of statements of prosecution witnesses, Vinay Mittal, former chairman of railway board and another official of ministry of railways. Apart from Kumar and Singla, the court framed charges against managing director of Bangalore-based G G Tronics India Pvt Limited N R Manjunath, middlemen Ajay Garg and Sandeep Goyal besides Rahul Yadav, Sameer Sandhir, Sushil Daga, C V Venugopal and M V Murali Krishan.

The court, while ordering the framing of charges, had said corruption in the country has reached unimaginable proportions and the case revealed a novel way of payment of bribe to achieve the aim. ‘As I had observed earlier in my order, the culture of ‘Sifarish’ (recommendation) and right contacts with powerful persons are the only thing which matter today for earning quick money.

Needless to say, with each changing day, the modus operandi of such corrupt person is also not only changing but the corrupt are becoming more cautious and secretive taking lessons from the previous instances of cases where corrupt officers have been caught and sent for trial,’ the judge said.
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