Haryana: Seized liquor missing from godown; case needs in-depth probe, says minister Anil Vij

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Published: May 10, 2020 10:00 PM

Home Minister Vij said he has already recommended to the chief minister that the three-member SIT should be headed by a senior IAS officer for a thorough probe looking into all possible angles involved in the case. 

Haryana police on Saturday seized Rs 97 lakh in cash, two pistols and three mobile phones besides a sports utility vehicle following a raid in a house to nab the prime accused in the case of missing huge liquor stocks from two godowns in Sonipat.

Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij on Sunday said a huge stock of liquor missing from a godown in Sonipat district is not an ordinary theft case and an in-depth probe is needed to uncover those involved in it. “This is not any ordinary theft case. Since when all this has been going on, with whose backing, from where the liquor was coming, how much excise theft took place as liquor from other states was also found, who all officials are involved, all this needs an in-depth probe,” said Vij.

This is why I have recommended a senior IAS officer to head the SIT to probe the case, the minister reasoned. Vij said he has already recommended to the chief minister that the three-member SIT should be headed by a senior IAS officer for a thorough probe looking into all possible angles involved in the case. Vij has given names of senior IAS officers Ashok Khemka, Sanjeev Kaushal and T C Gupta, requesting Chief Minister M L Khattar to pick up any one of these officer to head the SIT or suggest a name on his own.

Besides, Vij said other members of the SIT will be IPS officer Subhash Yadav and Additional Excise Commissioner Vijay Singh. A huge stock of liquor had gone missing from two godowns one under police and the other one under excise department’s supervision, in Sonipat district and this could not have happened without the connivance of officials, Vij had said earlier.

The Haryana police on Saturday seized Rs 97 lakh in cash, two pistols and three mobile phones besides a sports utility vehicle following a raid in a house to nab the prime accused in the case of missing huge liquor stocks from two godowns in Sonipat.

The Sonipat police raided the house of accused Bhupinder Singh, but he managed to escape, said officials. However, later on, he surrendered before the police. The two godowns in Sonipat from where the liquor stock was reported missing are stated to belong to accused Bhupinder Singh’s wife. The raid at the Chandigarh flat was conducted two days after Vij had questioned the rational of keeping seized liquors in godowns, owned by a person (Bhupinder Singh), who is facing 8-10 cases of liquor smuggling.

Meanwhile, Vij sought to clear the air after he had said that Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala had not spoken to him on this matter (liquor going missing) and he does not know what the JJP leader had told the media about this.

“When I said this, some people tried to project it as if there was some fight between the BJP-JJP on this. There is no such issue. When I said that Excise department had not registered a FIR (into liquor stock going missing), that did not mean that we (BJP and JJP) have differences,” said Vij.

Vij, a senior BJP leader, holds portfolios such as home, health, urban local bodies, in the Khattar government. His party runs a coalition government with the JJP, whose chief Dushyant Singh Chautala is deputy chief minister and holds 11 portfolios, including excise.

Vij had earlier said that while police department, which is under him, had registered the FIR after liquor stock from their godown had gone missing, the Excise had not given complaint despite the face that stock had gone missing from their godown as well.

However, main opposition Congress on Sunday while referring to alleged lack of coordination between the Khattar’s ministers on a critical issue, said, “this shows administrative and policy paralysis in Haryana”. “Dushyant Chautala says he had told Home Minister for probe (into liquor stock going missing), Vij says Dushyant has not spoken to him. Vij requests CM to pick up a name of IAS officer for SIT, but that request is pending for four days,” Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala told reporters through video conferencing.

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