Fresh twist in liquor scam as charred duplicate holograms seized

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Fresh twist in liquor scam as charred duplicate holograms seized

Friday, 05 July 2024 | Staff Reporter | RAIPUR

The Anti-Corruption Bureau/Economic Offence Wing (ACB/EOW) of Chhattisgarh Police on Thursday seized a half-burnt cache of duplicate holograms from a farm land belonging to liquor scam accused Anwar Dhebar in Dhaneli village on the outskirts of Raipur city.

Also, three persons were arrested for destroying the duplicate holograms there.

Those arrested were Anurag Dwivedi, Amit Singh and Deepak Duari, ACB Additional Superintendent of Police Chandresh Thakur said.

In July last year, three Chhattisgarh government officials including two IAS officers and the elder brother of Raipur Mayor Aijaz Dhebar were booked on charges of cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy in Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh in connection with an ED probe into an alleged liquor scam.

The FIR was lodged at the Kasna police station on a complaint from the Raipur-based deputy director of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which is probing the alleged Rs 2,000 crore liquor scam.

A Noida-based company, Prizm Holography Security Films Pvt Ltd, was illegally granted a tender to supply holograms to the Chhattisgarh excise department, the FIR said.

The company was not eligible to participate in the tender process, but in connivance with the company owners, the senior officials modified the tender conditions and illegally allotted the tender to the company.

As a quid pro quo, they took a commission of 8 paisa per hologram and also took a commitment to supply unaccounted duplicate holograms to sell illegal country liquor bottles from state-run shops in Chhattisgarh, the FIR said.

The hologram is a safety feature to ensure that authenticated liquor is sold in the state. But the actions of Prizm Holography in manufacturing duplicate holograms in Noida allowed the "liquor syndicate" to use the very same safety feature to fool consumers.

The holograms were made at a Noida factory and then transported to Chhattisgarh according to the instructions from the "liquor syndicate leaders", the FIR said.

The Uttar Pradesh Police arrested Dhebar and Tripathi last month. They two are in custody of the UP Police.

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