Ex-Army officer sent to jail for duping defence officer

Court sentences ex-Army officer, another man to 5-year imprisonment for duping defence personnel

Rana and Panda had collected about Rs 29 crore from many defence personnel with a promise to give them homestead land

Representative image. Credit: iStock Photo

A court here dealing with Odisha Protection of Interests of Depositors (OPID) Act sentenced two persons, including a retired Army officer, to five years imprisonment after finding them guilty of duping defence personnel.

The court on Friday sentenced Lt Col (Retd) Rakesh Rana, head of Sainik Welfare Organisation and Managing Director of Brookson Infra Pvt Ltd Purna Chandra Panda to five years imprisonment and also directed them to pay a fine of Rs one lakh each.

Rana and Panda had collected about Rs 29 crore from many defence personnel with a promise to give them homestead land. The duo, however, could not provide the land and also did not return the money to the depositors despite repeated requests. The duped depositors had filed a complaint against Rana and Panda with the Economic Offence Wing (EOW) of Odisha Police.

Investigating the cases, the police had booked Rana and Panda under various sections of IPC and section 6 of the OPID Act. Holding trial in the case, the OPID court convicted the duo after finding them and the company guilty of charges framed against them.

"Apart from the imprisonment, Rana and Panda are also directed to pay a fine of Rs one lakh each. Similarly, the company has been penalised with a fine of Rs two lakh," said special public prosecutor Biswajit Mohapatra of OPID (special) court.

Neither Rana nor Panda was available for comment.

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