bbed excise official spills beans, says he collected money at DC's behest
By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati/ Golaghat, July 1: Golaghat superintendent of excise Jiban Chandra Phukan, caught red-handed by anti-corruption sleuths yesterday while taking bribe from a woman, was today produced before the special court which remanded him to four days' police custody.
But as he came out of the court, Phukan created a flutter when he accused the deputy commissioner of Golaghat Varli Deka of "ruining him", saying he took the bribe at her behest.
"Varli Deka-e mok sesh korile. DC Varli Deka-e poisa nidile kono file-ei sohi nokore. (Varli Deka has ruined me. She doesn't sign files if money is not given)," Phukan told jourlists at the court premises.
He said the DC demands Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 to release a file.
When asked about the DC's involvement, sources in the anti-corruption bureau said the matter is "being examined."
There were charges of irregularities against Varli Deka, a 2009 batch IAS officer, even in the past. The then AIUDF MLA from Baghbor Sherman Ali Ahmed had even raised the issue in the State Assembly, accusing Deka of not releasing files on time when she was the deputy commissioner of Barpeta.
Golaghat superintendent of excise Jibon Chandra Phukan was arrested yesterday on the basis of an FIR lodged by one Dipanita Dowara before the anti-corruption bureau alleging that he demanded an amount of Rs 30,000 as bribe for releasing a file of a wine bar belonging to her sister, Parinita Dutta.
On the basis of the complaint, a trap was laid and a sum of Rs 25,000 marked with phenolphthalein powder was given to the superintendent and he was literally caught red-handed.
Phukan's three-storey residence at Jorhat was also raided yesterday itself and cash, bank accounts and several insurance policies etc were seized from it.
Meanwhile, assistant general secretary of All Assam Students' Union Monuwar Hussain said that corruption has become rampant in every department in Golaghat district. "From general employees to senior officers, all are involved in irregularities," he alleged.
Hussain said the file of the bar owner - the complaint in the excise superintendent bribery case - was sent for approval of the DC and it was seized from the table of the deputy commissioner, so "there is every likelihood of the DC's involvement in the case".
AJYCP central committee's joint secretary Jitul Rajkhowa also expressed suspicion of involvement of senior officials in the case.Organizations have demanded thorough probe into the role of the DC in the case.
Meanwhile, jourlists sought the Golaghat DC's reaction to the allegations. She said: "I am not sure about his (excise superintendent's) mental condition. I don't know why he said so. But now that the case is under investigation... it would not be appropriate for me to say anything."