The Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) probe against two Pune-based former senior officials of the Directorate General of Goods and Services Tax Intelligence (DGGI) has revealed they had taken a range of precautions to evade surveillance. The two are accused of attempting to obtain undue monetary advantage of Rs1 crore from a complainant in lieu of favours and not harassing his firm in course of a GST proceeding underway against it.
𝗗𝘂𝗼 𝗵𝗮𝗱 𝗮𝘀𝗸𝗲𝗱 𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗻𝘁 𝘁𝗼 𝘂𝘀𝗲 𝗮𝗺𝗲𝗿𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗻 𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁𝗲𝗱 𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗹𝗶𝗰𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻
The duo had allegedly asked the complainant to use a lesser-known American encrypted calling-messaging app, a new phone with a new SIM card and to avoid verbally mentioning the sum demanded, CBI sources said. An accused had allegedly shown an initial demand of Rs50 lakh on a calculator to the complainant, instead of uttering the sum, a CBI official said.
𝗙𝗶𝗿𝗺 𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗶𝗻𝗲𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝗖𝗕𝗜 𝗹𝗮𝘀𝘁 𝘆𝗲𝗮𝗿
The firm submitted its complaint to CBI on April 20 last year. The CBI’s verification of the complaint disclosed that the firm’s representatives met the accused officials on April 18, 2022, at their Pune office, and carried a digital video recorder. The recorded conversations featured one of the accused allegedly telling one of the firm’s representatives that he should never mention the sum demanded of them. “(After a pause), write, never speak about it. Have your lunch,” one of the accused allegedly told the complainant.
𝗔𝗰𝗰𝘂𝘀𝗲𝗱 𝗴𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝘀𝗲𝘁 𝗼𝗳 𝗶𝗻𝘀𝘁𝗿𝘂𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗻𝘁
After lunch, an accused allegedly gave a set of instructions to one of the two firm’s representatives. “An accused told the complainant that he should call him on his other number… and buy a new phone with a new SIM card and download a messaging-calling application, Bot**, which provides encrypted calls and messaging services, for conversation other than official talk,” the official said.
𝗖𝗕𝗜 𝗳𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱 𝗯𝗼𝘁𝗵 𝗼𝗳𝗳𝗶𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹𝘀 𝗴𝘂𝗶𝗹𝘁𝘆
“The verification disclosed that the two accused agreed to accept part payment of Rs25 lakh out of the total demand of Rs1 crore,” the CBI official said. “The facts and circumstances in the case disclosed commission of offences, including criminal conspiracy and demand of undue advantage under the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act,” the official said.
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