CBI registers PE into Khemka’s report on seed prices

Ashok KhemkaAshok Khemka

Nearly six months after Haryana IAS officer Ashok Khemka highlighted the alleged irregularities in the supply of wheat seeds to Haryana Seed Development Corporation (HSDC) by NAFED and NCCF, the CBI has registered a preliminary enquiry into the complaint.

Khemka, during his stint as the Managing Director of HSDC between July 18, 2012 and March 4, 2013, had given a report to the CBI seeking registration of a case against officials of National Cooperative Consumers' Federation (NCCF) and National Agriculture Cooperative Marketing Federation (NAFED) for selling seeds at inflated prices to HSDC.

CBI spokesperson Kanchan Prasad said, "The CBI has registered a preliminary enquiry to probe into the alleged irregularities on the complaint of the then MD of HSDC"

It is alleged that HSDC wanted to purchase 10,000 tonnes of wheat seeds from private suppliers in case cooperative agencies — NCCF and NAFED — did not have enough stock with them. The cooperative agencies allegedly offered to supply the seeds after which HSDC did not approach private suppliers.

These societies allegedly sourced untreated wheat seeds from three middlemen who got it from private companies and supplied them to HSDC at Rs 2,050 per quintal whereas if the the corporation had purchased directly from private players, it would have cost Rs 1,600 per quintal. The purchase at inflated prices resulted in a loss of Rs 5 crore to the exchquer, the CBI said.

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