Guwahati, Sept. 12: The special court, Assam, today issued summons to 32 employees of the state elementary education department in a case relating to a multi crore rupee scam involving illegal appointment of teachers and disbursal of salary using fraudulent means in Assamís Lakhimpur and Dhemaji districts.
The 32, including five former directors of the department ó Joy Chandra Goswami, Hemanta Kumar Sarma, Md Mohsin Ali, Balendra Kumar Das and Ananda Chandra Pegu ó have been directed to appear in court on September 26.
Special judge, Assam, Md Mazed Ali, passed the order in connection with CID police station case number 2/2008.
The CID had registered the case on February 9, 2007, on the basis of an FIR lodged by the then elementary education deputy secretary R. Deka, stating that 752 teachers had been appointed illegally in Lakhimpur and Dhemaji districts against non-existent posts.
The FIR stated that on May 18, 1992, services of these illegally appointed teachers were terminated with one-time payment of 24 monthsí salary but some field-level officers of Lakhimpur and Dhemaji fraudulently allowed 355 terminated teachers to continue working and of these 193 drew their salaries till August 2007 which was made possible through submission of fraudulent budget estimates by some employees of the department. According to the CID, the fraud, committed between 1992 and 2007, had cost the state exchequer around Rs 25 crore.
In its chargesheet filed in March this year, the CID had named 10 officials of the education department, but the court decided to proceed against these 32 employees under Section 319 CrPC.
Section 319 CrPC says that if, in the course of any inquiry or trial, it appears from the evidence that any person other than the accused commits any offence for which he could be tried in court together with the accused, the court may proceed against him for the offence he appears to have committed.
The court said the five former directors, during their respective tenures between September 31, 1991 and November 20, 2006, had allegedly entered into criminal conspiracy with the other accused and played a leading role in fraudulent allocation of budget for payment of the teachersí salaries.
Among the rest, two are dealing assistants Ramesh Barman and Nripen Sarma and one is superintendent (appointment branch) Anil Mondal, who allegedly concealed or destroyed a file (number EAA/18/87) containing incriminating evidence against some of the accused persons. Despite requests by the CID, the department could not produce that particular file.