500 quintals of PDS rice seized

Staff Reporter

VIJAYAWADA: Sleuths of the Vigilance and Enforcement on Tuesday nabbed the dealer of a fair price shop in Durgapuram while he was trying to divert rice meant for public distribution to a departmental store located adjacent to the shop. They seized about 500 quintals of rice, and registered criminal cases against the fair price shop dealer and the owner of the departmental store.

Second seizure

This was the second major seizure of huge stocks of PDS rice from dealers in the city in the last two weeks. The vigilance sleuths seized 300 quintals of rice from a fair price dealer in Gunadala 10 days ago.

Following a tip-off, the vigilance officials kept two of their constables on watch at the fair price shop in Durgapuram since morning. In the evening, the constables found rice bags being diverted to Bhramaramba departmental stores and immediately informed higher-ups about it.

A team headed by Deputy Superintendent of Police (V&E) Appa Rao conducted simultaneous raids on the fair price shop and the departmental store and seized about 85 quintals of rice from the fair price shop and about 425 quintals of rice from the departmental store.

Fair price shop dealer R.J. Nirmala was charged with diverting rice meant for pubic distribution to the departmental store, where the rice was reportedly polished and mixed with the stocks procured from rice mills. The seized stock was shifted to the godowns of the Civil Supplies Department.

Case registered

The accused, Nirmala, was handed over to Satyanarayanapuram police, while proprietor of the departmental store A. Durga Prasad was absconding. The police registered a case under the provision of Essential Commodities Act.