Mumbai: Thirteen years later, the economic offences wing has finally started investigations to nail a businessman who sold allegedly defective magazines for self-loading rifles to the state police. Of the total magazines supplied to the police, 26,200 could not reportedly be used by the security forces in sensitive areas like Gadchiroli and during anti-Naxal operations.
In July 1998, the state police floated a tender, inviting bids from suppliers of SLR magazines. Subsequently, the contract was awarded to Jaison Industries Pvt Ltd, which by March 2000, supplied the required consignment and the magazines were distributed to various police agencies. “In 2000, for the first time, the assistant superintendent of police in Gadchiroli reported to the director-general of police’s office that the magazines were oversized and could not be fitted in jackets,” said an officer.
After receiving a complaint from Gadchiroli, the magaiznes were sent to Armament Research and Department Establishment in Pune for an examination. The institute confirmed that the magazines were faulty and not of the ordered size. The director-general’s office then asked all the police agencies to send back the magazines and the state police asked the firm to replace the consignment. But Jaison Industries refused to give a replacement as a result of which the state police incurred a loss of Rs 59.95 lakh.
Thirteen years after the defects came to light, the police finally lodged a complaint against Jaison Industries with the Colaba police last month. Assistant inspector general Tejsingh Chavan lodged a complaint against Jayant Kulkarni (75), the owner. The case has been transferred to the EOW. “We have not yet arrested Kulkarni. We are collecting the relevant papers and inquiring,” said an officer.
Last year, a similar case surfaced, when the EOW registered a case against a businessman, Bimal Aggarwal, for supplying faulty bomb suits to the state police. Aggarwal was later released on bail.
Cops lost 60L to oversized consignment
In 1998, the state police awarded a contract to Jaison Industries Pvt Ltd to supply magazines of self-loading rifles. By March 2000, the firm supplied the entire consignment and the magazines were distributed to various police agencies. But in 2000, the assistant superintendent of police in Gadchiroli reported that the magazines were oversized and could not be fitted in jackets. Though the state police asked the firm to replace the faulty magazines, the latter refused to do so, causing a loss of Rs 59.95 lakh to the force.
The Times of India, July 23, 2013