INDIA: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has arrested an Executive Director (Projects) of Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL), as well as CGM, GAIL, and three others, including the Director of a Vadodara (Gujarat)-based private company, in connection with a Rs 50 lakh bribery case.
GAIL is a central public sector undertaking under the ownership of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India, and is considered a national gas agency.
The individuals arrested are: Krishna Ballabh Singh (K B Singh), Executive Director (Projects), GAIL, NOIDA (Uttar Pradesh), Surendra Kumar, Director, Advance Infrastructures Private Limited, Vadodara, Davinder Singh, Chief General Manager, GAIL, Sunil Kumar, Senior General Manager, MECON Limited, and an employee of the sub-contractor of Advance Infrastructures Private Limited.
The FIR (No. RC2182023A0012 dated September 04) has been registered under section 120 B of the Indian Penal Code and sections 7, 7A, 8, 9, 10, and 12 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 (Amended in 2018) against the accused, according to the CBI statement.
Those named in the FIR include: K B Singh, Surendra Kumar, Advance Infrastructures Private Limited, Davinder Singh, Sunil Kumar, Harsh Naresh Yadav (Badli, Delhi), and Suryavesh Attar Singh alias Billu Yadav (Jhajjar, Haryana).
The case was registered against Singh and others based on allegations that Singh, in conspiracy with others, was extending undue favor in connection with SAPL (Srikakulam Angul Pipeline) (Andhra Pradesh to Odisha) and VAPL (Vijaipur Auraiya Pipeline) (Madhya Pradesh to Uttar Pradesh) Projects of GAIL. Surendra Kumar, Director, Advance Infrastructures, had arranged a bribe amount of Rs. 50 lakh to be paid to Singh in exchange for the expeditious clearance of pending bills and for overlooking default in work.
The bribe amount was to be delivered through Harsh Yadav and Suryavesh Attar Singh alias Billu Yadav.
Acting on a tip-off, the CBI laid a trap in NOIDA, apprehended Singh, and recovered the bribe amount.
Searches were conducted at the premises of the accused in Delhi, NOIDA, Visakhapatnam, and Vadodara, which led to the recovery of incriminating documents and digital evidence.
Singh was accused of overlooking the defaults of Advance Infrastructures and pressuring his subordinates to clear its pending bills without recovering penalties for incomplete work.
In addition, although the payment was supposed to be made through the Vendor Invoice Management System, he pressured his subordinates to release the payment offline.
Advance Infrastructures had undertaken pipeline laying work on behalf of GAIL for the Srikakulam Angul Pipeline project. It was also working as a sub-contractor of JSC OGCC KazStroy Service, a frontal company of the KSS Group of Kazakhstan, with an office in Haryana.
JSC OGCC KazStroy Service was awarded pipe laying and other work for the Vijaipur Auraiya pipeline project of GAIL. Both of these projects were being supervised by Singh.