Rangia (Assam): The Assam police has claimed to have busted a scam involving supply of government rice by seizing one lakh bags of the cereal, belonging to the Food Corporation of India’s (FCI) Meghalaya unit, from a private godown in Kamrup district while the food item was being repackaged for selling.

Following a tip-off, a joint operation conducted by the police and district administration seized the bags, stuffed with FCI rice from the godown of a private company in Chhaygoan Industrial Development Centre, Chhatabari under Boko police station recently.

According to senior officials, the irregularities came to light after villagers of Nadiar Par noticed suspicious movement of a truck laden with bags of rice and informed the police.

A team comprising Boko Police Officer-in-Charge Sanjeet Roy and Chhaygoan Circle Officer Jayanta Borah seized the truck and interrogated the driver and handyman, which led them to unravel the massive irregularities taking place at the godown of the private company.

“We seized one lakh bags of FCI rice, each weighing 50 kgs, from the godown. The private company was repackaging the commodity in their own brand and then sending it to Meghalaya,” a senior official said.

The team also seized 13 trucks, from the godown and the local area ,which were used for transporting the food item, he added.

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“From our preliminary investigation, we found that the company sends rice to Assam Rifles in Meghalaya after repackaging. They send it to other places too. A chain must be in existence and many people, including officials, are likely to be involved in the scam,” officials in Assam said.

It was found that the company, identified as Maruti Quality Products Pvt Ltd (MQPPL), has a tie-up with a leading multinational food giant and their roles are being probed, they added.

The MQPPL and its godown are owned by one Deepak Agarwal, who is absconding, and a joint investigation is being conducted by the police and the civil administrations.

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