3 senior UP govt officials chargesheeted in recruitment scam case

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New Delhi, Sep 10 (UNI) The CBI has filed a chargesheet against three senior government officials of Uttar Pradesh, including state Home Secretary Mahesh Kr Gupta, for their alleged involvement in the 1998 recruitment scam in the Department of Information and Public Relations.

The chargesheet against Mahesh Kr Gupta, presently Home Secretary, Prabhat Kr Sinha, presently Special Secretary (Higher Education) -- both posted in Lucknow -- and Raj Gopal Singh Verma, Deputy Director (Information) posted in Agra was filed yesterday in the court of CBI Special Magistrate (Anti-Corruption) Rekha Dixit in Lucknow under Section 173 Cr PC, according to official sources.

The chargesheet against the three was filed for commission of offence under Section 120-B IPC read with 409 IPC and Section 8 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 for which no sanction for prosecution was required.

Raj Gopal Singh Verma was also prosecuted for offences under Section 13(L)(A)(D) of the PC Act as sanction for his prosecution had been received by the state government.

Another accused Akhilesh Chandra Shukla, who assisted Verma in collecting the 'fund' from candidates in Kanpur, was also chargesheeted.

The chargesheet against Mahesh Kr Gupta, the then Director Department of Information and Public Relations (and presently Home Secretary), under Section 173 Cr PC was necessitated as the Central government refused to grant sanction to prosecute him, while the request to prosecute Prabhat Kr Sinha, the then Additional Director (and presently Special Secretary - Higher Education) was still lying with the UP government since July 2005, said a CBI official.

The state government had granted permission to the CBI to prosecute only Raj Gopal Singh Verma, the then Deputy Director in the department (and presently also Deputy Director - Information).

The 1998 scam involving recruitment of candidates for Group 'C' posts in the Department of Information and Public Relations, UP government, had the three officials' connivance as members of the selection committee.

Raj Gopal Singh Verma, as Dy Director, was also the Nodal Officer for holding the test. He had contacted candidates and sought 'huge amounts of money' to select them for the posts. Part of the money collected was later handed over to Prabhat Kr Sinha by him, who in turn gave the money to Mahesh Kr Gupta.

During investigations, several candidates gave statements to the CBI that they paid money to the accused for getting selected for the advertised posts in the Department of Information and Public Relations.

UNI AN ATI KN1328

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