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NBCC boss arrested

Guwahati, Jan. 27: The CBI today arrested the additional general manager of the National Buildings Construction Company Limited (NBCC), P.K. Mittal, from Shillong on the basis of confession made by his deputy, B.C. Dhiman.

Dhiman was arrested by the CBI on Saturday for offering a bribe of Rs 5 lakh to a CBI inspector to influence the ongoing probe into the “financial anomalies” by some NBCC officials during the renovation of roads and bylanes in Guwahati.

An official said Dhiman’s confessional statement has “opened a can of worms about the huge misappropriation of government money” by a section of NBCC officers and contractors while executing a project worth nearly Rs 60 crore to improve the roads and bylanes in the city.

A source said Mittal had fled to Shillong soon after the arrest of his deputy on Saturday. “After the CBI tracked him down to Shillong, Mittal was left with no other option but to give himself up to CBI sleuths today,” the source said.

The senior NBCC officer was produced before a CBI special judge in Shillong today, who sent him to transit remand for a day.

“He will be brought to the city tomorrow and again produced before a CBI special judge here in Guwahati,” the source said. He added that the CBI would ask for his custody for a “thorough interrogation”.

The agency produced Dhiman before the special judge on Sunday and got his custody for five days.

A case has been registered under Section 12 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, against Dhiman and others by the CBI’s anti-corruption unit based in Guwahati.

The source said Dhiman had told his interrogators that Mittal gave him the Rs 5 lakh cash which he offered to the CBI inspector. He said Dhiman had confessed that he and Mittal together came to Guwahati early last week.

“Dhiman also told his interrogators that Mittal asked him to bribe the CBI inspector at Hotel Starline in Guwahati, to scuttle the probe,” he said.

An official source said the CBI was taking the help of the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) to ascertain that the total amount of public money believed to be siphoned off by an “officer-contractor nexus”.

The source said more arrests were likely to be made by the CBI in this case.

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