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Assam minority scholarship scam: CID files chargesheet against 32 accused | Guwahati News

GUWAHATI: The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Assam Police on Thursday filed chargesheet against 32 people, including four headmasters and eight CSP owners, in connection with the minority scholarship scam in the state.
The chargesheet has been filed at the court of CJM, Kamrup (M), Guwahati, within the stipulated period time. All 32 accused, who were arrested for allegedly misappropriating pre-matric scholarship funds for poor minority students’ worth about Rs 10 crore for the past two fiscals, are still in judicial custody.
The case was filed after a complaint by Mahmood Hassan, director of the Assam Minority Development Board and state nodal officer of the pre-matric scholarship for minorities. The CID said in a press statement that a case has been registered under sections 120(B) (criminal conspiracy), 406 (criminal breach of trust), among other relevant sections of the IPC.
“Total 32 accused — four school headmasters, two EDPs (Electronic Data Processor), two assistant teachers, two presidents of school management committee), eight owners of CSPs (customer service points) of banks and 14 middlemen) — were arrested in connection with the case and 65 number of seizures were done during investigation by CID. These seizures include laptops, mobile phones, hard disk, CPU, DVR, finger print scanner. A large number of incriminating documents from a number of districts of the state,” a statement issued from the state police headquarters here said.
Mahmood Hassan told TOI that a report was submitted on how the illegal siphoning was done with the help of the headmasters and CSP operators who took a dishonest way to deprive the students. “The operators of the CSPs, the places where bank accounts can be opened and cash withdrawn, purchase SIM cards and mobile handsets. The school staff give a list of eligible students and the middlemen apply online for scholarships on behalf of the students. With fake signatures, they open bank accounts in the name of beneficiaries. They link the scholarships to these bank accounts using their own mobile numbers. OTPs are generated and money withdrawn, often with the knowledge of local bank staff,” Hassan said
According to Hassan,the inquiry was conducted in five minority students dominated districts and covered scholarships granted in 2018-19 and 2019-20. Hassan says that in many cases, the money was siphoned of without the knowledge of beneficiaries, and in others, the students were given a small portion of the money.
The charge sheet runs into 7,386 pages and the case diary of the case runs into 1880 pages. A total of 220 people have been named as prosecution witnesses (PWs). The statement of 10 witnesses have also been recorded by the judicial magistrate under the provision of Section 164 CrPC.
The chargesheet has been submitted in 86 days from the date of first arrest in the case.

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