A Gauhati High Court Division Bench on Wednesday (January 15, 2020) had summoned the Additional Director General of Police and, Crime Investigation Department of Assam with a reply as to why proceedings under the Contempt of Court Act, 1971 were not to be initiated against him in the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI). The High Court bench had to summon the police officer for failing to comply with an ‘extracted order’ given by it in a PIL filed against the alleged multi-crore-rupee fraud in disbursing compensation in connection with the development of the four-lane National Highway Stretch Jhanji-Demow in Sivasagar district.
The bench further mentioned that in the event that the order extracted above is not complied with by the date of listing, the High Court would impose exemplary costs to be deducted from the Additional Director General of Police’s (ADGP) salary for violating the Court's method.
"The transfer of investigation cases from the Sivasagar Police Station to the CID has been requested, which is merely an eyewash in so far as the investigation is pending since 2017," the order said.
It was alleged that two government officials were involved in this Rs. 300 crore scam and therefore, the state government had ordered a CID investigation into the matter in 2017. It was alleged that the money was to be given as a compensation to the people living near the NH-37 so that the National Highway-37 could be widened from Jhanji to Demow in Sivasagar district from 2008-2014.
On December 11, 2019, the bench asked the Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) and Crime Investigation Department (CID), to file a response regarding the progress made in investigating cases - 398/207 under Sections 406/420 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC); 331/2017 under Sections 420/468 of IPC and 475/2017 under Sections 409/420/34 of IPC, all in Sivasagar Police Station. Nevertheless, the order was not fulfilled by the Additional Director General of Police (ADGP).
It was argued by the lawyers from Sivasagar that, “only the CBI can reveal the truth behind the massive corruption and misappropriation of public money as several top civil servents are possibly involved in the scam.”
Author: Ayush Raina