Ahmedabad Metro scam: Ex-IAS officer sent to prison

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Former IAS officer Sanjay Gupta, who is involved in the alleged Rs 113 crore Ahmedabad Metro rail scam, was sent to Sabarmati Central Jail in judicial custody on Tuesday. Earlier, the CID (crime) officials produced him before a special court after their four-day remand ended.
Before Gupta was sent to jail, he submitted three applications through his lawyer, including a request to pass a gag order on media reporting on his case.
The former bureaucrat, who was the chairman of the Metro-Link Express for Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad Company Ltd (MEGA), was arrested by CID on Thursday last week and was sent to police custody for further investigation. Gupta and co-accused Radhesh Bhatt were produced before the special anti-corruption court in the morning where the CID didn’t seek his further remand.
The CID investigation has allegedly revealed that when Gupta was the chairman of MEGA, Rs 147 crore was paid for filling land to level the earth for the construction of casting yard and a depot at Bhat Koteshwar-Motera. It has been alleged that 20 lakh cubic metre was filled and Rs 147 crore was paid. But during the investigation, it was found that a mere 9.42 lakh cubic metre filling had been done, while the remaining over 11 lakh cubic metre, whose filling cost is estimated to be around Rs 113 crore, has no record.
The CID has alleged that Gupta and Bhatt, former senior manager, used to take Rs 50 crore as commission from the suppliers. Gupta has been alleged of floating dummy companies and his employees, working with Neesa Group, as its directors. It has been alleged that the money granted for MEGA project was given to these companies through cheques. The CID has revealed that  Rs 11 crore was paid to such companies through cheques.
During the court proceedings, Gupta, through his lawyer, submitted three separate applications claiming that “he was being mentally pressurised and harassed.” “His reputation was being targeted by media through selective leaks by the investigating officer,” and “he wants to record his statement before the court”.
Appearing for Gupta, senior lawyer I H Syed told that the information related to the investigation was being leaked to media. He said that the investigating officers should divulge his breakthrough only in the court and not to the media. Syed said that there should be some restrain order against the media. The court will hear the matter on the three application submitted by Gupta on Thursday, Syed also informed the court that there was one “private person” who met Gupta in the police vehicle and was reportedly playing “mediator to settle the case”.
However, this person’s identity was not revealed during the hearing.  Special public prosecutor Sudhir Brahmbhatt, after Gupta was produced, informed the court that Gupta should be sent to judicial custody as his further remand was not required.

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