Balasore businessman detained for embezzling 6 million rupees in subsidies | Bhubaneswar News

BHUBANEWAR: A Balasore-based businessman was arrested on Friday for allegedly embezzling government subsidies to the tune of nearly Rs 6 crore under the pretext of selling agricultural machinery and equipment to farmers.
The accused was identified by the Economic Offenses Wing (EOW) of the State Crime Branch as Srinath Rana (48).
Rana, who previously worked as a regional manager for Varushapriya Agrotech Private Limited, a Bangalore-based company, had abused the company’s login ID and password to embezzle the grant amount.
The company, which has its branch in the Baramunda region here, lodged a complaint with the Bharatpur police station in January this year. The EOW resumed the investigation from the Bharatpur police on Wednesday.
Varushapriya Agrotech is an authorized supplier of paddy transplanters to farmers across the country and also provides various services to Odisha government under various subsidized programs.
During his tenure as regional manager in the company in 2018-2020, Rana was given the task of registering the sale of agricultural machinery and facilitating subsidies to beneficiaries / farmers by accessing the website of the department of state agriculture www.agrisnetodisha.ori.nic. in.
The cost of each paddy transplanter then varied between Rs 2.33 lakh and Rs 3 lakh. The government offered subsidies between Rs 93,320 and Rs 1.50 lakh on each machine.
According to the procedure, farmers would first buy agricultural machinery from the authorized dealer. The dealer then uploaded the details of the sale, along with photos of the beneficiaries, to the government website, after which the government transferred the amount of the subsidy to the farmers’ bank accounts.
“During the investigation, it was discovered that between 2017 and 2021, Rana, owner of the car agency M / s Tarini in Balasore, had fraudulently uploaded false sales details of more than 500 paddy transplanters with wrong engine and chassis numbers. He also uploaded the names and photos of bogus beneficiaries from 18 districts to the government’s direct benefit transfer portal, ”said Director General of Police (Crime Directorate) Sanjeeb Panda.
Subsequently, the government released the amount of the subsidy to the tune of approximately Rs 6 crore in favor of farmers.
The subsidies were credited to farmers’ bank accounts.
Rana had conspired with the poor peasants and paid them a few thousand rupees before withdrawing the grant amounts from their accounts. “Rana had embezzled government subsidies without selling or buying farm equipment,” Panda said. Although the farmers took advantage of this arrangement illegally, the EOW did not stop them as they were attracted to Rana, who paid them a few thousand rupees.

About Christopher Easley

Christopher Easley

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