Police seek property details of PRP Granites and Exports
The Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption has launched a detailed enquiry into the multi-crore granite scam in Madurai.
The Special Investigation Cell of the agency launched a probe on Tuesday and nominated an officer in the rank of an Additional Superintendent of Police to investigate, police sources said.
The move follows a representation made by the Madurai Collector Anshul Mishra to the Chief Secretary Debendranath Sarangi seeking a probe by the DVAC into the role of public servants in the scam.
“Besides the revenue loss to the State exchequer, we will be focusing on the lapses on the part of public servants. Once connivance or dereliction of duty is made out on the part of government employees, a regular case under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act will be registered,” a senior police official told The Hindu.
Meanwhile, police investigating the granite scam in Madurai have written to the Registration Department seeking the details of property owned by PRP Granites and Exports in Tamil Nadu. Investigators have so far identified about 3,000 acres of land owned by the group in and around Madurai, police sources said.
Soon after finalising the immovable assets, the police would initiate steps to attach the property through court under the Criminal Law Amendment Act.
Apart from sealing the business establishments of PRP Granites and Exports and other granite firms in Madurai, police and revenue officials seized several vehicles, the sources said.
Independent probe contemplated
Even as several teams of the Madurai district administration and police are assessing the extent of illegal or excess granite mining and quantum of loss caused to the State exchequer in recent years, the Enforcement Directorate is contemplating an independent probe.
The agency took details of the case from the Madurai police, the sources added.
The police have arrested about 30 persons, including granite baron P.R. Palanichamy, in connection with the case. Investigation into the granite scam stemmed from a report by former Madurai Collector U. Sagayam, who estimated loss to the tune of several thousands of crores to the State government due to unlawful granite mining in Madurai district in the last one or two decades.
Mr. Anshul Mishra has sent an interim report to the State government on the inspection of 175 granite quarries in Madurai district. Preliminary enquiries not only revealed connivance of some officials but also that a few key files pertaining to the case were missing.