The Mumbai unit of the Maharashtra Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Tuesday arrested the husband of an ex-corporator, who is also a junior engineer with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs 1 lakh.
According to ACB officials, the accused have been identified as Sachchidanand Kore (41), a junior engineer posted with the BMC's P/North ward office, and Salim Almelkar, whose wife Salma is a former corporator from Malad.
Officials said that the complainant in the case is a civilian who had recently started construction of a bungalow on a plot owned by him, and applied for a water connection at Kore's office on Monday.
“On Tuesday, Salim approached the complainant while the latter was on a morning walk, and told him that he would have to pay Rs 1 lakh in exchange for the connection,” an ACB officer said.
The complainant, unwilling to pay the bribe, approached the ACB and submitted a complaint in writing against both Kore and Salim the same day and the agency set about verifying his claims.
In a telephonic conversation monitored by an ACB team, Kore allegedly demanded Rs 80,000 for himself, while Almekar, in a separate call, agreed to accept Rs 20,000.
A trap was subsequently laid, and acting on the ACB's instructions, the complainant met Kore and Almelkar on Tuesday. As decided, he handed over the discussed amounts to both the accused.
As soon as they accepted it, ACB officials, who were already waiting nearby in plainclothes, moved in and arrested them. They were both charged with demanding and accepting a bribe under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
“Searches are being conducted at Kore's office and residence so that any evidence pertinent to the case can be taken into custody. As per procedure, we will also be conducting a preliminary evaluation of Kore’s assets to check if there are grounds to start a Disproportionate Assets inquiry,” an ACB officer said.
Salim's wife, Salma, could not be reached for comment.