Corruption by public servant a ‘gigantic problem’: Court

Corruption by a public servant has become a “gigantic problem” and has a “deep and pervasive impact” on the functioning of the entire nation, a special court here has said while sentencing an Income Tax Department officer after convicting her in a Rs 75,000 bribery case.
Special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court judge M R Purwar on Wednesday held Preetha Babukuttan guilty of the offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act and sentenced the 52-year-old officer to four years of rigorous imprisonment.
The prosecution said the officer had initially made a demand of Rs 1,30,000 in March 2015 to settle the tax liability of the complainant, who runs a partnership firm.
She had told the complainant that his tax liability was around Rs 5 lakh and she would try to bring it down to Rs 55,000, for which she demanded Rs 1,30,000. After negotiations, she reduced the amount to Rs 1,00,000 and later to Rs 75,000.
However, the complainant was not willing to pay the bribe and brought the matter to the notice of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) unit of the CBI. Accordingly, a trap was laid and the accused was caught while accepting the bribe amount of Rs 75,000.
The court, after examining witnesses and evidence produced by the prosecution, held that it is clear that the accused had demanded.

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