2014 Flood: 3 Booked For Relief Against Non-Existent Shop  


SRINAGAR — Crime Branch(CB) Kashmir Saturday claimed to have unearthed a case of fraudulent claim and receipt of flood relief against a non-existent property at Sonawar and filed a charge-sheet against three persons.

“The accused is charged with hatching a criminal conspiracy with Basharat Ahmad Dar and Bashir Ahmad Mir (now dead), President and General Secretary of Bazar Committee Bonamsar Sonawar, respectively, to “deceitfully and fraudulently” include the name of the accused as owner of a shop washed away by the Flood of 2014, and managing sanction and withdrawal of relief amounting to Rs. 25,000,” a CB spokesperson said in  a statement.

On the basis of record and eyewitnesses account, the prosecution has established that the shop against which the flood relief money was drawn and received did not exist at all and charged the accused with offences committed U/S 420, 468, 471, 121-B RPC. The charge sheet was produced against the three accused before the Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate Srinagar for judicial determination.  

The prosecution has also sought legal proceedings U/S 179 RPC against several persons for deposing false statements before the Investigating Officer and the Revenue Officials with regard to the non-existent shop. During investigation, it was also established that the then Naib Tehsildar Kothibagh, Mohammad Amin, acted negligently and filed a false report on the purported shop. The Crime Branch has recommended departmental action against him vide letter No. CBK/R/2508-11 dated 8 February 2019. 

Acting on a complaint received in 2016, the Crime Branch registered Case FIR No. 61/2016 U/S 420, 468, 471, 121-B RPC and initiated investigation during which it was revealed that the accused Saleem Mohiuddin Bhat had drawn relief money by fraudulently presenting himself as owner of a shop at Sonawar purportedly damaged due to the flood of 2014. The eyewitnesses account, revenue documents and Fire and Emergency Department record, however, revealed that father of the accused, late Mohammad Sultan Bhat, was a tenant of a shop at Sonawar up to 1991 when it was completely razed in a fire incident. Thereafter, no shop existed there as the owner of the gutted shop-line did not reconstruct the fire-destroyed building. Following the devastating floods of 2014, the accused, assisted by Basharat Ahmad Dar and Bashir Ahmad Mir, hatched a criminal conspiracy and defrauded the State exchequer to the tune of Rs. 25,000 by presenting the accused as owner of a non-existent flood damaged shop. The Bazar Committee Bonamsar vide letter No. 101/SA/2015 dated 30-7-2015 under the seal and signatures of its President and General Secretary, had submitted to the Tehsildar South Srinagar a list of 55 flood victim shopkeepers of Bonamsar Sonawar for relief. The list which figured the accused Saleem Mohiuddin Bhat at serial number 47 was supported by an affidavit signed by the two office bearers of the Bazar Committee. For submitting a false report and authentication the President and the General Secretary of the Bazar Committee Bonamsar Sonawar, Basharat Ahmad Dar and Bashir Ahmad Mir, have been made co-accused in the case along with the main accused, Saleem Mohiudin Bhat. 





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