Srijan scam: Top banker arrested from Chennai

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), investigating the Rs 1000 crore-Srijan scam in Bihar’s Bhagalpur district, has arrested Chief Manager of Indian Bank, Deo Shankar Mishra, from Chennai. File photo for representation

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), investigating the Rs 1000 crore-Srijan scam in Bihar’s Bhagalpur district, has arrested Chief Manager of Indian Bank, Deo Shankar Mishra, from Chennai.

Mishra is currently posted in Chennai’s Karaikudi branch but was earlier working at Indian Bank’s Bhagalpur branch. He was bank manager there when Rs 8.7 crore was diverted from the government treasury to the bank account of the Srijan Sahyog Mahila Samiti, an NGO.

The CBI is investigating the Srijan scam which came to light on August 3, 2017. It was detected by Bhagalpur District Magistrate (DM) Adesh Titarmare that there has been pilferage of government fund to the tune of around Rs 500 crore by a Bhagalpur-based NGO, Srijan. An investigation by top cops indicated that around Rs 355.7 crore were fraudulently transferred from three heads – land acquisition (Rs 270 crore), urban development schemes (Rs 70.7 crore) and district administration (Rs 15 crore) – into the account of an NGO, Srijan Sahyog Mahila Samiti.

Srijan was run by a social worker Manorama Devi, who reportedly flaunted her connections with politicians and bureaucrats and helped Srijan spread its tentacles.

Altogether 17 persons, including Prem Kumar, the personal assistant (PA) of Bhagalpur District Magistrate, were arrested after nine FIRs were lodged by the police. Later, when it was found that the embezzled fund had crossed Rs 1000 crore, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar ordered a CBI probe into the scam.

“The arrest was made after the investigating agency found that the top banker had diverted Rs 8.79 crore from the account of the Deputy Development Commissioner (DDC) to the bank account of NGO (Srijan),” a senior police officer, aware of the developments, said.

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