ACB arrested CIDCO employee for taking bribes from farmers to allot them land under the 12.5% land transfer scheme; cops recovered Rs 4.5 crore
With the arrest of CIDCO employee Milind Bagul, who was caught red-handed taking a bribe on Friday, investigating officers from the Thane Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) have unearthed an elaborate scam relating to the 12.5 per cent land transfer scheme.
Under this scheme, CIDCO acquires land belonging to farmers for development and allots them developed land. According to CIDCO sources, Bagul, a senior clerk, raked in vast sums of money in bribes while transferring land to farmers under the scheme.
Particulars of the allotment files would be passed on to Bagul for inspection. On receiving the file, he would send an intimation to the farmer concerned informing him of the allotment. Simultaneously, he would instruct one of his aides working in connivance with him to obtain a stay order from the court on the land transfer. After this, the land would be termed disputed, and the allotment stalled.
When the hapless farmers approached the CIDCO office to get the files cleared, Bagul, as the sole authority to clear files of disputed land, would play a double game. He'd ask the farmers to pay Rs 1 lakh per 100 sq m of land for clearing the file. In cases when the farmers were unable to grease his palms, he illegally transferred the land to other developers, and raked in money. Either way, he was in the thick of things.
But his gameplan was foiled after a farmer approached the Thane ACB with a complaint against him. On Friday, ACB officials caught Bagul red-handed while taking a bribe and in his office in the CIDCO headquarters in CBD Belapur.
After arresting him, the ACB raided his Ulhasnagar residence, where they recovered 150 files pertaining to the 12.5 per cent scheme. They also found Rs 4.5 crore worth of cash and two guns, one of which was unlicensed. Upon hearing of his arrest, his family members tried to escape from the house with three suitcases -- the contents of which were not disclosed -- but were caught by ACB officials.
"An FIR has been registered against Bagul by the ACB officials," said Sanjay Surve, senior inspector of Central police station in Ulhasnagar.
Bagul, also known as Nana Bagul, is the Ulhasnagar president of Republican Party of India.