245 cases lodged by Odisha Vigilance against 381 persons in 2020

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Bhubaneswar, Jan 2 (PTI) Odisha's anti-corruption wing Vigilance department has registered 245 criminal cases against 381 persons including 53 Class-I officers, 37 Class-II officers and 76 private persons during 2020, official sources said.

During the year, the vigilance department lodged as many as 245 Disproportionate Asset (DA) cases of which 93 cases have been instituted for acquisition of disproportionate assets against 93 public servants and 45 private persons.

The total disproportionate assets in all the 93 cases stand at Rs 123.91 crore. In 36 cases, the value of disproportionate assets is more than Rs 1 crore and in 4 cases, the value is more than Rs 4 crore.

'At least 24 DA cases have been registered against Class-I officers and 19 DA cases have been registered against Class-II officers,' the official said.

The DA case involving highest ever DA amount in a case in Vigilance organization is Rs 9.35 crore which has been registered against one Indian Forest Service (IFS) officer.

To unearth disproportionate assets in this case, searches/verifications were conducted by 150 officers and staff of Odisha Vigilance across four states for two consecutive days. This was the biggest search operation conducted by state Vigilance so far, he said.

This apart, the vigilance sleuths this year intercepted 8 government officers (4 Class-I & 4 Class-II) while carrying unaccounted for cash of Rs 26,95,440.

The vigilance also conducted 103 trap cases against 113 public servants and 2 private persons including 9 Class-I officers, 16 Class-II officers, 80 Class-III employees, 4 Class-IV employees, 4 other public servants and 2 private persons for demand and acceptance of bribe amounting to Rs 16.62 lakh.

The anti-corruption wing also registered as many as 49 misappropriation cases relating to embezzlement of public money against 128 persons, including 99 public servants and 29 private persons, involving misappropriation of public funds amounting to about Rs 15.83 crore.

Misappropriation cases have been registered against 20 Class-I officers, 2 Class-II officers, 60 Class-III employees, 1 Class-IV employee, 16 other public servants and 29 private persons.

During the year 2020, as many as 221 enquiries have been initiated against 36 Class-I officers, 33 Class-II officers, 149 Class-III employees, 7 Class-IV employees, 10 other public servants and 12 private persons on their alleged involvement in various acts of corruption/malpractices.

The anti-corruption wing has also disposed of as many as 161 cases after investigation in 2020, of which, charge sheets have been filed in 153 cases against 204 persons including 27 Class-I officers, 20 Class-II officers, 120 Class-III employees, 6 Class-IV employees, 3 other public servants and 28 private persons.

The percentage of charge sheet comes to 95 per cent of the cases disposed of after investigation, the official said.

The vigilance also arrested as many as 187 persons, which include 34 Class-I officers, 28 Class-II officers, 106 Class-III employees, 6 Class-IV employees, 5 other public servants and 8 private persons.

During the year, 16 cases have ended in conviction against 1 Class-I Officer, 2 Class-II officers, 13 Class-III employees and 1 private person. Thus, altogether, 17 accused persons have been convicted during the period. 'The percentage of conviction in respect of cases disposed of after trial by the courts comes to 46 per cent,' the official said.

During the year, 15 public servants have been dismissed from the government service following their conviction in vigilance cases, which include 1 Class-I Officer, 3 Class-II Officers and 11 Class-III employees.

This apart, during the year, the pension of 16 retired public servants has been stopped after their conviction in Vigilance cases, it said.

The forest wing of the vigilance department in 2020 has conducted 96 joint raids with the help of local forest officials and seized timber, machinery and vehicles worth about Rs 3.25 crore. In this connection, forest offence cases have been initiated against 17 persons.

The vigilance wing has also conducted 54 enquires/ investigation as per the direction of the Lokayukta, he said.