Senior Forest officer arrested for taking money for transfers-postings
Nagpur: An Indian Forest Service Officer, who had taken money from many forest guards and officials for managing their transfers-postings to their choice places, was arrested on Sunday by Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) sleuths who recovered Rs 19.25 lakh from him.
Deputy conservator of forest, Deepak Bhatt, who was arrested while boarding a private bus to Pune, was carrying the cash in a bag and the sleuths seized Rs 19.25 lakh unaccounted cash from him.
“Bhatt had reportedly taken money from many forest guards and officials for managing their transfers to their desired places,” the press note of ACB said.
At time of arrest, Bhatt was unable to justify why he was carrying so much cash, but later he claimed that he had collected the amount from some relatives for a personal work in February. He also said that he required the amount for his son’s admission.
The ACB officials questioned Bhatt’s claim that he wanted the amount for son’s admission in February when results are not even announced.
Forest department sources said that higher authorities gave a stay to the transfers of 80 Forest Guards, 17 Foresters and 2 Chowkidars a few months ago, on Bhatt’s recommendation.
Bhatt (56) is posted in Nagpur and his family stays in Pune. The ACB sleuths also conducted searches at Bhat’s rented flat in Nagpur and his house in Pune and verified all his financial transactions. They assessed the wealth, including movable and immovable property, amassed by him. So The officials also unearthed disproportionate assets.
Accordingly, Bhatt was also booked under section 13 (1) (e) of Prevention of Corruption Act for possession of disproportionate asset.