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CBI arrests Corporate Affairs Ministry official in graft case

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New Delhi: The CBI on Monday said that it had arrested B.K. Bansal, director genral of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, who was dealing with matters related to alleged violations by a Mumbai-based pharmaceutical company, on charges of bribery.

Bansal, who was detained by sleuths of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday while allegedly receiving the second lot of the bribe amount, was arrested on Sunday, said an official.

CBI spokesperson Devpreet Singh told IANS that “Bansal was arrested for receiving a bribe of Rs nine lakh for extending favours to a corporate firm. The money was being given outside a Delhi hotel”.

Along with Bansal, a middleman named Vishwadeep Bansal, who worked as the distributor for Elder Pharmaceuticals, was also arrested by the investigating agency, the officer said.

A case was also registered against the company’s chief operating officer, Anuj Saxena, who allegedly sought the assistance of Vishwadeep Bansal for negotiations.

The officer further said that the Corporate Affairs DG was dealing with matters related to alleged violations committed by Elder Pharmaceuticals.

The alleged violations were detected during an inspection by the Regional Director of Western Region (Mumbai) of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

“Bansal sat on the ministry report and started negotiating with the company and demanded Rs 50 lakh as bribe for not recommending SFIO (Serious Fraud Investigation Office) investigation,” Singh said, adding, “The deal was stuck at Rs 20 lakh. First installment of Rs 11 lakh was already paid and when the second installment was being paid he was trapped and arrested.”

On the company’s alleged violations, Singh said: “Elder Pharmaceuticals had floated debantures and fixed deposits under some clause of Companies Act. In that they collected more than Rs 176 crore from over 4,000 investors and later they didn’t pay the interest and siphoned off the money to invest in some other companies they floated.”

The company was siphoning money to some other companies abroad, a senior officer said.

An agency official, requesting anonymity, said they siphoned money to some Dubai-based companies and were also acquiring a company in Bulgaria.

The CBI investigation also revealed that the ministry official has 20 properties in Haryana’s Sirsa, Gurgaon, Faridabad as well as Delhi. All the properties were bought in the last two years and most of them were on his name along with his wife’s and son’s name.

On Saturday, the CBI said Rs 54 lakh were recovered during searches at different locations in connection with the case.

–IANS

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