There is not just a scam of Rs 100 but Rs 185 crore in the Cooperative Department in Haryana, according to officials from the Haryana Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB). They believe this because the masterminds of the scam made the review report related to it disappear. Consequently, the ACB has expanded the scope of its investigation and begun focusing on grants issued since 2005.
The committees involved in the scam reported an expenditure of Rs 185 crore, but the department lacks a report on how and where the money was spent. Numerous schemes have been running in the Cooperative Department since 1992, but money has been released only since 2005. Consequently, employees associated with the records may come under investigation.
During interrogation, the ACB requested records from several officers, only to be informed that no documents were available. Sources indicate that higher officials were neither informed promptly about the missing records nor was any FIR registered. Therefore, ACB may include employees associated with the records in the case.
The entire focus of ACB and the Cooperative Department is on the money released since 2005. However, due to missing records at the lower level, the investigation faces significant challenges.
Following the dismissal of Additional Registrar Naresh Goyal, who served as the nodal officer of the Integrated Cooperative Development Project (ICDP) since 2017, Joint Registrar Yogesh Sharma has assumed his position. Furthermore, Sanjay, General Manager of the Central Cooperative Bank of Sonipat, Rohit Gupta, Deputy Registrar of Karnal District Cooperative Society, and Balvindra, Account Officer, have been suspended.
Sanjay is implicated in the case registered in the Ambala range. ACB has requested government approval to include Naresh Goyal in the case, as the nodal officer is responsible for the entire project.
ACB sources reveal that when IAS Rajesh Jogpal, who assumed the post of Registrar in the Cooperative Department in April, became aware of the matter, he conducted an audit review in September and October. It was then discovered that 40% of the records from the cooperative societies were missing. Consequently, the Registrar ordered completion of the records.
Instructions were given to complete the records by obtaining information from banks if the money was transacted through them. Earlier, there was not even an audit review meeting in the department. Audit reviews are crucial as they reveal the amount allocated for the project, expenditure, and remaining funds. The lack of an audit review earlier contributed to the undetected scam.