Innovation is there in every field, and it holds good even in the case of taking bribe.
Apprehensive of getting caught by Anti-Corruption Bureau officials, Government employees who receive illegal gratifications are trying out new methods instead of directly collecting money. Police officers probing corruption cases say that to escape getting caught red-handed, some employees are hiring private persons to receive bribe on their behalf!
Despite having nothing to do with Government offices, these private persons hang around waiting for instructions from employees. “The idea is to pass the blame onto the private person if we catch him and plead not guilty,” an ACB official said.
In some offices, bribes are routed to employees through contract workers. But this is only one of the many new tricks adopted by them. As ACB officials started arresting even private persons who are collecting bribes at the behest of employees, shops and grocery stores are becoming places of ‘money transfers’. “They would try to cover up their wrongful means of making money, claiming that the persons offering bribe and shop owners have some transaction,” say ACB authorities. However, employees forget that the person receiving the money - be it a shop owner or a private person engaged by them - cannot escape as the currency notes given as bribe are mixed with a chemical powder, which cannot be noticed with the naked eye. Once the person comes into physical contact with the currency notes, he cannot deny involvement in the case. In a recent incident, the Inspector of Chevella police station in Ranga Reddy district demanded bribe from a petitioner and asked the latter to hand over the money to a constable waiting on the roadside a few yards away from the station.
The constable too took care not to touch the notes with his hands.
“He wore gloves and took the money before pushing it inside his clothes. What he failed to realise is the chemical powder came into contact with the hand gloves and his clothes as well,” the investigators said.
How the chemical test is done
The chemical powder is applied to the currency notes to be given as bribe. Carrying these notes, the complainant approaches the Government servant demanding money. ACB officials wait nearby and catch the person soon after the money is handed over.
A bottle of water mixed with a separate chemical is kept ready. The fingers of the person, who collects the bribe, are dipped in the water, the colour of which turns pink. The water is preserved and presented in the court as evidence.