'Faulty rifle magazine' case probe begins

Written By Unknown on Senin, 22 Juli 2013 | 22.23

MUMBAI: After the faulty bomb suit scam, there is another case of similar gravity in the state police. The city economic offences wing (EOW) is probing a case of faulty SLR magazines which was sold to the state government 13 years ago. The state police have given contract to a company for providing self loaded rifles' magazines. Off the total magazines given to the police, 26,200 were faulty and could not be used by the security forces in sensitive areas like Gadchiroli and in anti-naxal operations.

The EOW said that in July 1998, state police floated a tender to purchase SLR magazines. While many companies participated and submitted tenders, the contract was awarded to Jaison Industries Pvt Ltd. By March 2000, the firm supplied all the magazines which were distributed to various police agencies as per their requirement. "In 2000, the assistant superintendent of police in Gadchiroli for the first time reported to the director-general of police's office about the faulty magazines. He stated that the magazines were oversized and there was problem in fitting the magazines in the jackets. Last year, the EOW had registered a case against a businessman, Bimal Aggarwal, for supplying faulty bomb suits to the state police. He was released on bail later.

After receiving a complaint from Gadchiroli, the magaiznes were sent to Armament Research and Department Establishment (ARDE) in Pune for examination. The institute confirmed that the magazines were faulty and not of the actual size that was ordered. The director-general's office then asked all the police authorities to send magazines back to DG office. Later, the state police again negotiated with the firm that had supplied the magazines asking them to provide replacement. However, the firm refused to give replacement, causing the state police a loss of Rs 59.95 lakh. Twelve years after the incident the state police decided to lodge an official complaint against Jaison Industries. Tejsingh Chavan, an assistant inspector general of police lodged a complaint against Jayant Kulkarini (75). "We have not arrested Kulkarni yet. We are collecting all the relevant papers and making inquiries into the case," said an EOW officer.

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