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Two held on charge of diverting PDS wheat

Staff Reporter

KOCHI: The shadow wing of City Police arrested two persons on charges of diverting the wheat meant for supply through Public Distribution System (PDS) from near Karimukal on Friday night.

The arrest was made when two accused were shifting nearly 5.5 tonnes of wheat from the sub-depot of the Kerala State Civil Supplies Corporation near Eroor railway gate to Periyar Agro Food Industries at Ponjassery, Aluva.

Anas, 33, Pollekattu, Thrikulathoor, Muvattupuzha, who was driving the truck was arrested along with Martin, 46, Thekkemaliyil, Asokapuram, Aluva. Wheat, which costs Rs. 20 for a kg in the open market, was to be distributed at Rs. 2 to those Below Poverty Line and Rs. 11.60 to those above poverty line through ration shops. The supply from sub-depot, from which the accused released the wheat, was to be distributed to ration shops in Kalamassery, Chottanikkara, Puthiyakavu, Choorakkadu and Nettoor.

City Police Commissioner Manoj Abraham had instructed Shamsu Illikkal, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Special Branch, to conduct a probe on complaints of material to be supplied through PDS being diverted to black market. Following the drive, nearly 35 cases of pilfering kerosene and cooking gas from PDS and selling it in black market were registered during last year. During interrogation of the accused it was found that the wheat was to be ground and pushed back to open market at higher price. The police have extended probe to check whether diversions were made earlier and whether this was done with connivance of Civil Supplies officials.

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