More bank staff involved in fake currency scam

August 12th, 2008 - 4:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Aug 12 (IANS) Preliminary investigations by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) have revealed the involvement of one more bank employee of the State Bank of India (SBI) branch at Domariyaganj in Uttar Pradesh in the fake currency scam, officials said Tuesday. Cashier Sudhakar Tripathi was arrested July 29 and during interrogation confessed to exchanging fake currency notes with a nominal value of Rs.15 million with original ones from the bank’s currency chest.

The accountant of the bank has now come under the scanner.

“The strong room (currency chest) has two keys and it can only be opened by using both keys simultaneously. It would have been impossible for Tripathi to open the room with a single key,” said a member of the investigating team, preferring anonymity.

The scam came to light when the Special Task Force (STF) of the state police arrested four people with fake currency notes in the Domariyaganj town of Sidharthnagar district.

“Sustained interrogation of Abid Sheikh alias Pundit, who was among those arrested, gave us leads to Tripathi, from whose residence we recovered RS.700,000 in cash,” additional director general of police Brij Lal told IANS.

Tripathi, who was produced before a special judge of the district court handling cases of corruption here Monday, along with co-accused, Abid Sheikh, is under judicial remand till Aug 22 and is currently lodged in the Lucknow jail.

“We will be applying for his remand later today (Tuesday)”, superintendent of police, SIT, A.K. Mishra told IANS.

Meanwhile, during preliminary interrogation by the SIT in Siddharthnagar Sunday, Tripathi is stated to have provided more information about the scam.

“According to him, the available balance of the chest was showing a shortfall due to some technical reason and Triptahi claimed he also informed senior bank officials about the same,” added the source.

However, after getting no response, he said he was forced to arrange fake notes from Abid and place them in the currency chest in a bid to save himself, the source added.

“Tripathi claimed that in exchange of Rs.35 (original), Abid used to supply him Rs.65 (fake).” the source added.

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