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Rs 622cr looted in fodder scam

Ranchi, Dec. 29: Thirteen years after the then Bihar government gave the go-ahead for a crackdown on fodder scamsters, the CBI has established that bureaucrats and state officials in collusion with suppliers have looted Rs 622 crore from state treasuries.

A review of the now infamous Bihar animal husbandry cases — popularly referred to as fodder scam— undertaken by the CBI has revealed that of the 64 cases handed over to the agency on the orders of the Supreme Court and Patna High Court, chargesheets have been filed in 60.

A total of Rs 721.89 crore was reportedly withdrawn with the help of fake and fabricated supply bills by animal husbandry officials in collusion with politicians, bureaucrats and fodder and veterinary medicine suppliers from state treasuries falling in Jharkhand. However, investigation by the CBI could establish that Rs 622 crore had been siphoned off, the review said.

It was further revealed that vehicle numbers mentioned in the bills claimed for transporting cows, pigs, cattle, animal fodder and medicines belonged to two and three-wheelers. In many cases, suppliers who had submitted bills for providing fodder and medicines were not involved in this trade at all. Budget allocation letters were either forged or tampered with to withdraw huge sums of money.

Till now, verdicts have been delivered in 36 cases. Superintendent of police, CBI, Ranchi, R.C. Choudhury said the Centre had given assent for setting up of additional special CBI courts at Ranchi to speed up investigation.

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