₹5.04-crore ‘challan scam’ unearthed in Registration and StampsDepartment

Raids conducted on Sub-Registrar offices across State

Officials of the Registration and Stamps Department conducted raids on sub-registrar offices (SROs) in the State on Friday, on the alleged multi-crore challan scam.

The officials identified that ₹5.04 crore was allegedly swindled (loss caused to the government by the accused) in 17 offices in the State in the last few months. The Registration and Stamps Department officials suspended five officers and booked cases against the document writers and other staff allegedly involved in the scam.

The accused reportedly changed the figures on the challans and paid less amount to the government. The staff and the document writers allegedly submitted forged challans and documents with tampered amount and reportedly misappropriated the amount, the investigation officers said.

Krishna Range Deputy Inspector-General (DIG), Registration and Stamps Department, A. Ravindranath said that about ₹3.70 crore fraud was unearthed in Mandavalli, Gunadala, Patamata and Naidigama sub-registrar offices.

“We noticed that ₹2.2 crore fraud was unearthed in Mandavalli SRO, 73 lakh in Patamata and ₹22 lakh in Gunadala offices, and the raids are continuing.,” Mr. Ravindranath said.

In Kadapa, the accused allegedly resorted to ₹1.08 crore fraud by submitting forged challans, signatures and challan numbers, the officers said.

Guntur DIG G. Srinivas Rao said that ₹7.95 lakh scam was unearthed in Mangalagiri office, and raids were continuing in all the 35 registration offices in the district.

“Initially, we are verifying the records for the past one year. Police cases have been filed and a detailed investigation is on,” the DIG said.

“Fraud was noticed in Bhimavaram, Alamur (East Godavari), Akiveedu, Gunupudi, Penugonda, Gandhinagar (Vijayawada), Nandyal and other sub-registrar offices. We recovered ₹29 lakh so far,” Mr. Ravindranath said.

Minister for Registration and Stamps Dharmana Krishna Das told The Hindu said that instructions had been given to verify the records in all 295 offices and submit a detailed report on the challans scam.

“Registration and Stamps Department Inspector General (IG), AIG, DIGs and District Registrars (DRs) are conducting investigation. As of now, we have not handed over the case to any investigation agency. Criminal cases have been filed against the accused in the districts concerned,” the Minister added.

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