The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Uttar Pradesh Police on Thursday, November 7, conducted a raid at the residence of former Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Ltd (UPPCL) Managing Director AP Mishra in connection with the employees' provident fund scam. Mishra was reportedly arrested on Tuesday in connection with the case. So far, two other officers have been arrested in the matter related to the alleged investment of Uttar Pradesh power employees' provident fund money in scam-hit Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Limited (DHFL).
The two senior officials Praveen Kumar Gupta, former Secretary of the UP State Power Employees Trust, and UPPCL's Provident Fund Trust, and UPPCL's erstwhile Director (Finance) Sudhanshu Dwivedi arrested in connection with the Rs 4,000 crore Employees' Provident Fund (EPF) scam were sent to a three-day police remand by the court on Wednesday. This development comes after the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Uttar Pradesh Police demanded seven-day custody of the accused persons. However, the court granted three-day custody.
As per the documents seized by the EOW, Sanjay Agarwal, the then Additional Chief Secretary of UP (Energy) and Chairman of UP Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL), was heading the Employees' Trust in which the gigantic scam surfaced last week. What makes matters worse for the top Union government Secretary is the mounting pressure from thousands of state government employees and labour unions to initiate action against the bureaucrats responsible for investing their hard-earned money in a controversial private firm, Dewan Housing and Finance Limited (DHFL).
The documents show that in March 2017, five top officials of the UPPCL, led by Sanjay Agarwal (as Chairman of the Trust), were present in an important Trust meeting which allegedly took the crucial decision of investing provident fund money in DHFL. Out of the five officials, three, including the then Managing Director of UPPCL, A.P. Mishra, have been arrested by the EOW. The power employees' unions, which have threatened go on a state-wide strike, are now demanding swift action against the top officials of the power department who threw norms to the wind and opted for a company like DHFL to invest the provident fund of employees.
According to available records, Rs 2,631.20 crore of employees' General Provident Fund was invested in DHFL out of which Rs 1,185.5 crore has been returned by the finance company. A total of Rs 1,491.50 crore of Contributory Provident Fund was invested in the company out of which Rs 669.30 crore has been received by the trust and DHFL is allegedly yet to return Rs 2,267.9 crore (principal amount) of GPF and CPF to the trust.
(with ANI inputs)