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ACB arrests DCO Handwara for accepting bribe

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HANDWARA: Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) apprehended the Drug Control Officer (DCO) of Kupwara in the Bumhama area for demanding and accepting bribe.
“Complainant in a written complaint alleged that he is a pharmaceutical distributor by profession and had a valid license to sell stock and distribute drugs and medicines. On November 2, 2023, Drug Inspector Ishtiyaq Ahmed Baba took some medicines sold by him at Hachmarg Tarathpora, then he issued a notice to him and asked for his licence,” ACB official said.
Official added, “On November 7, complainant went to his office at Bumhama Kupwara and showed his licence which officer declined to accept as valid licence and demanded Rs 10,000 from him, on which complainant argued that he is not doing anything illegal, why should he pay bribe, on which drug inspector threatened him that he will get his licence cancelled, if he did not pay him bribe of Rs 10,000.”
As the complainant was against payment of any bribe, he approached ACB Baramulla with written complaint requesting for legal action against Drug inspector for demanding and accepting bribe of Rs 8000 and demanding more bribe of Rs 2000 from him for releasing his seized medicines.
Immediately on receipt of the complaint, official said, a discreet verification was conducted which revealed that the Drug inspector had seized some medicines from complainant and on pretext of releasing them he already took bribe of Rs 8000 from complainant on November 9 and was demanding more bribe of Rs 2000 from him for releasing his seized medicines.
The probe conducted reveal that prima facie offence U/S 7 of Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 are made out against accused Public servant namely Ishtiyaq Ahmad Baba, Drug Control Officer Handwara for accepting bribe of Rs 8,000 and further demanding Rs 2000 bribe from complainant for releasing his seized medicines.
As such, case FIR No. 12/2023 U/S 7 of Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 (as amended in 2018) was registered at P/S ACB Baramulla against Drug Control Officer Handwara and investigations were initiated, official said.
During the course of investigations, the aforesaid officer was caught red handed while demanding remaining amount of Rs 2000 from complainant.
He was immediately taken into custody after completing all legal formalities and was also presented before court at Baramulla which remanded him to police custody.
Meanwhile searches were also conducted at his residence situated at Bemina Hamdina Colony during which cash amount of Rs 2 Lakh was also recovered which was also seized, official said adding that further investigations are going on.

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