UP Animal Husbandry scam: Another key accomplice held

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Lucknow, Nov 8 (PTI) The UP STF has arrested the son of a senior Rajasthan Congress leader for allegedly duping an Indore businessman of Rs Rs 9.72 crore on the pretext of awarding him a tender of the UP animal husbandry department.

The Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force arrested Sunil Gurjar alias Monty Gurjar, another key accomplice in what came to be known later as the UP animal husbandry scam, at Jaipur airport minutes before he was to take a flight to Dubai.

Carrying a reward of Rs 50,000 for his arrest, Gurjar, a close aide of scam mastermind Ashish Rai, presently lodged in Lucknow Central Jail, was nabbed by STF sleuths at 10.30 pm on Saturday, the STF said in a statement.

The STF also seized Gurjar’s passport and Aadhaar card, besides Rs 18,500 in cash, three mobile phones and a trolley bag.

Gurjar, whose name also figured in the infamous Bhanvari Devi abduction and murder case of Rajasthan and a slew of other cheating cases, is the son of former MLA from Nasirabad in Ajmer, Ramnarayan Gurjar, and an adopted son of former senior Congress leader and Puducherry‘s former Lieutenant Governor Govind Singh Gurjar, the STF said in a statement.

Among a slew of cheating cases, in which Gurjar was earlier booked, include one of duping his sister-in-law of Rs 21 lakh and two Gujarat businessmen Neelambhai Patel and his brother Sandeepbhai Patel of several crores of rupees for getting them a tender to supply salt to Uttar Pradesh, the STF added.

The accused earlier had been was an NGO 'Sabal Bharat Sansthan' in Jaipur and used to commit fraud through it, the STF said.

The present case, which came to be known as the UP animal husbandry scam, was lodged on the complaint of an Indore-based businessman, Manjeet Singh Bhatia, alleging that he had been duped of Rs 9.72 crore on the pretext of awarding him a tender of UP’s Animal and Husbandry Department.

After registration of the case at Lucknow’s Hazratganj police station under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act, the STF began probing the case and has arrested several persons for their alleged role in it.

Those arrested included chief personal secretary Rajnish Dixit and private secretary Dheeraj Kumar of the UP minister of state for Animal Husbandry, Fisheries and Dairy Development, said STF earlier.

Two others arrested in the case are A K Rajiv alias Akhilesh Kumar and scam mastermind Ashish Rai. After his arrest, Rai had earlier told STF that he along with his accomplices used to operate from a room in the UP Vidhan Sabha secretariat.

He impersonated himself as a deputy director (purchase) in the Animal Husbandry Department and duped Bhatia of Rs 9.72 crore.

Rai also revealed names of all his accomplices, police said.

Rajnish Dixit told police that Dheeraj Kumar Dev had introduced him to Ashish Rai. He said Rai had offered him Rs 1 crore for providing him a room in the Vidhan Sabha secretariat. PTI NAV RAX RAX