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Traders evading arrest

PDS WHEAT SCAM

A Correspondent
TANGLA, June 13: The multi-crore rupees scam in the public distribution system (PDS) in Bhergaon subdivision involving six mills and its proprietors in Tangla of Udalguri, which though came to light years back after RTI applications were submitted by a student leader of All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU), has seen action quite late. Sources said that traders identified as Santosh Kumar Agarwalla (Sree Krishna Industries), Giriraj Vyas (Maa Bhawani Industries) , Pintu Ghosh (Kalpatru Modern Atta Mill), Anupama Brahma (Sree Ganesh Atta Mill) and Bimala Beria (Sree Lakshmi Rice and Modern Atta Mill) are evading arrest. Out of them, Maa Bhawani Industries is lying defunct. The proprietor of Agarwalla Mini Modern Atta Mill, Paban Kumar Agarwalla has already been arrested by the sleuths of BIEO from Guwahati and sent to judicial custody. The total scam is estimated to be around Rs 13 crore.

Sources said between 2010 and 2016 around 1.378 lakh quintals of wheat were provided by the government to the six mills of Tangla in Udalguri district. The wheat was bought by the mill owners at Rs 738 per quintal. They were supposed to provide the flour to nine gaon panchayat cooperative societies. But the flour did not reach the beneficiaries and instead found its way to the open market, though in files they maintained that it was distributed among the cooperative societies.

The BIEO has registered a case against the traders under IPC Sections 120 (b), 420 and 406 and under Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act. The scam opened a can of worms which might expose scams in PDS rice and kerosene and expose the unholy nexus of sections of bureaucrats, contractors and officials of the Food and Civil Supply department in Bhergaon subdivision, sources informed.

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Ankur Kalita