Early Times Report
Srinagar, Feb 25: The CBI has arrested a gun manufacturer, who allegedly worked as a conduit of arms dealers and district officials of the erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir state for procuring pan-India arms licences, an official spokesman said. The arrested has been identified as Rahul Grover by the agency officials.
Grover was arrested by the Rajasthan Police's Anti-Terror Squad in 2017 for the same charge and he secured bail after spending a year in jail.
The spokesman said the accused was produced before a designated court here which remanded him in 10 days' CBI custody. Grover, who filed bail applications numerous times in various courts of Rajasthan including the high court, is accused of facilitating consumers for renewal of arms licences or grant of fresh licences.
The then additional advocate general, appearing on behalf of ATS, had contended in the Rajasthan High Court that out of 565 licences which were recovered from Grover, 93 licences have been granted to persons who were never posted in Jammu and Kashmir at the time when the licences were issued and many of them have never served in the armed forces.
The CBI had registered a case on the consent of Jammu and Kashmir government to probe a vigilance case which alleged that during the period from 2012 to 2016, the Deputy Commissioners of various districts of the erstwhile state had fraudulently and illegally issued bulk arms licences in lieu of monetary consideration.
After taking over the case, searches were earlier conducted at the premises of the accused which led to the recovery of incriminating documents.
Grover is alleged to have also transferred a huge sum of money into account of a kin of an IAS officer who was then serving as the Deputy Commissioner of a district. After registering the case, the CBI had carried out searches on December 30 last year, including at the premises of senior IAS officers Yasha Mudgal and Kumar Rajeev Ranjan.
Besides searching the premises of Mudgal, a 2007-batch IAS officer, and Ranjan, a 2010-batch IAS officer, houses of Itrat Hussain, Mohammed Saleem, Mohammed Junaid Khan, F C Bhagat, Farooq Ahmed Khan and Jenhagir Ahmed Mir were searched, the officials said. Mudgal is at present CEO-and-Managing Director of Power Distribution Corporation Jammu, while Ranjan is CEO of Jammu Srinagar Metro Rail Corporation.
The CBI, which was handed over the matter in August 2018, is probing arms licences that were issued in from 2012-16 from various districts of the militancy-hit region.
It is alleged that the then public servants received illegal gratification in issuance of licences to non-residents of Jammu and Kashmir in violation of rules, the officials said.
The agency had registered two FIRs in this regard with the consent of the Jammu and Kashmir government with the then DC of Kupwara listed as an accused in one of them, while unidentified officials of various districts have been mentioned in another, they said. The CBI's Chandigarh unit has registered the FIRs for alleged criminal misconduct and criminal conspiracy under the Ranbir Penal Code and in violation of Section 3/25 of the Arms Act, besides provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act.