Maharashtra Anti Corruption Bureau officials arrested three members of a central government-appointed panel, which is responsible for the Swachh Bharat rankings, for demanding and accepting bribes, PTI reported on Sunday. The three members had allegedly demanded a bribe of Rs 2.5 lakh from Aurangabad Municipal Corporation officer Jayashree Kulkarni in exchange for a positive Swachh Bharat rating.
The accused finally agreed to accepting Rs 1.7 lakh as a bribe after Kulkarni negotiated with them. The team had arrived in Aurangabad on Friday to inspect the municipal corporation’s sanitation projects and were then supposed to file reports to the Quality Council of India, Superintendent of Police Shrikant Paropkari told the news agency. “The team was supposed to give marks out of 2,000,” Paropkari said.
Kulkarni informed the municipal corporation commissioner of their demands and filed a complaint with the anti-corruption bureau. The sleuths laid a trap at a city hotel and caught them red-handed. The accused have been identified as Shailesh Purushottam Bajania, Vijay Joshi and Govind Ghimare, residents of Gujarat.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in 2014, aiming to have a clean India by October 2, 2019, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.