While a former GM of Food Corporation of India (FCI) and two others were arrested in a case of missing rice trucks scam, the purported protagonist of the swindle continues to be at large.
Serious questions have been raised as to why no action has been initiated in the missing rice truck scam against a transport contractor, Arun Kumar Rai.
The Food Corporation of India (FCI) had suffered a loss of Rs 2.36 crore due to ‘missing’ of 111 rice trucks between 2014 and 2015 en-route from FCI’s Nagaon godown to Tawang and Seppa in Western Arunachal Pradesh and between Jorhat and Tuensang in Nagaland.
But, as the monetary value of the scam was small, CBI had turned down the request of Assam Government, and the cases were later handed over to the Bureau of Investigation and Economic Offence (BIEO), Assam.
Two cases were lodged with the BIEO – BIO Case No 8/2018 related to RKK Enterprise over loss of 10 missing trucks and BIO Case No 11/2018 related to 4A Enterprise over the loss of 101 missing trucks.
Out of the total loss of Rs 2.36 crore, the FCI recovered Rs 88 lakhs from its officers and staff for the faux pas, while Rs 97 lakh was recovered from the contractors.
The FCI had also won the money suit filed against the contractors M/s 4A Enterprise and M/s RKK Enterprise at the district courts of Nagaon and Jorhat. The courts had held the two transport contractors guilty in the case.
The court had directed the FCI to recover the money suit value of properties owned by Arun Kumar Rai, proprietor of 4A Enterprise and Riso Taka, the proprietor of RKK Enterprise.
The remaining amount of Rs 51 lakhs is now to be recovered from the proprietors of 4A Enterprise and RKK Enterprise.
Unfortunately, FCI could not recover the remaining amount of Rs 51 lakhs from both the transport contractors till date.
It is surprising that the investigating agency is yet to take any action against the prime accused, Arun Kumar Rai, proprietor of M/s 4A Enterprise.
While Arun Kumar Rai is at large, there are reports that he changed his name to Arun Prasad Rai, and is now based in Jharkhand.
In addition to changing the name, Rai has changed his firm’s name, 4A Enterprise to A4A Enterprises and even undertook handling & transportation work of the Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) at Hazaribagh in Jharkhand.
There are also reports that Anupam Dubey, the then DGM of FCI, who had awarded technical approval to Arun Kumar Rai’s company, has also not been brought under the ambit of investigation.
Sashi Ranjan, AGM (Finance) of FCI, whose role was to authenticate the bank guarantee submitted by Arun Kumar Rai, had also failed in his responsibility. But, he has neither been arrested nor been summoned for interrogation.