The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on trapped a gram panchayat president red handed while accepting bribe. The accused is VJ Sebastian, president of Kokkada gram panchayat.
Ummer, a mason who worked up the ranks and qualified as a civil contractor, had bagged a low profile civil contract work at the panchayat. After raising money from various sources, he had completed works to the tune of Rs 5.5 lakhs. However, despite repeated requests, panchayat president Sebastian denied to clear his bill. Sebastian allegedly demanded Rs 50,000 from Ummer to get the bills signed.
According to a press release issued by the anti-corruption bureau on Feb 7, Wednesday, Ummer borrowed Rs 20,000 from his acquaintances in order to pay Sebastian. However, the latter did not entertain Ummer’s plea until he paid the full amount demanded. In fact, he began demanded Rs 35,000 in addition to the Rs 20,000 paid. This left Ummer with no option but to file a complaint with the ACB on February 5.
The ACB then weaved a trap to nab Sebastian. The officials asked Ummer to visit the panchayat office and pretend to hand over the remaining Rs 35,000. Acting on their direction, Ummer handed over the money to Sebastian through the panchayat PDO Purushottham G. The ACB officials on the other hand recorded the act and caught the duo.
Sebastian and Purushottham have been booked under the Anti-Corruption Act 1988 and remanded in judicial custody until February 20. A case has been registered at the ACB district police station.