The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in Assam has arrested two more persons including a business correspondent of a nationalised bank, for reported embezzlement of pre-matric scholarship funds for minority students totalling about Rs 10 crore for the past two financial years.
This has taken the total number of arrests from four districts of the state to 32, officials said on January 5.
An Assam police spokesperson said that the CID sleuths with the help of police, conducted searches at various locations under two police stations – Nagarbera and Boko in Kamrup district, from where the two accused were arrested.
He said that one of the detainees is a business correspondent of a nationalised bank and owner of an IT centre whereas the other had acted as a middleman to misappropriate the scholarships amount meant for students belonging to the minority community.
Of the 32 accused arrested so far, there are headmasters, teachers, owners of customer service point (CSP) of nationalised banks, president of a school management committee, electronic data processors besides 12 middlemen.
Mastermind held, claims Assam Police
One of the arrested persons, Robiul Islam from Goalpara district in Assam, is believed to be the mastermind behind siphoning off the funds and was also associated with a large number of schools in submitting fraudulent applications for scholarships and withdrawal of scholarship funds.
The Assam police spokesperson said that all the people have been arrested since early last month for allegedly misappropriating the pre-matric scholarship funds.
According to the police officer, CID teams are regularly conducting raids in different districts to arrest the remaining accused in the case.
The CID sleuths have so far seized three laptops, 217 students’ photographs, 104 students’ certificates, 173 pre-matric scholarship forms and 11 bank passbooks.
The pre-matric scholarship for the students belonging to the minority community is a central scheme sponsored and implemented by the Union Ministry of Minority Affairs for students who secure 50 per cent marks in the previous examinations and whose parents’ annual income does not exceed Rs 1 lakh.