Surat : The Western Railway (WR) has suspended the Chief Ticket Inspector (CTI) on the alleged charges of corruption in assigning duties to the sleeper coaches to the travelling ticket examiners (TTEs) in the long and short distance trains from the Surat railway station.
The action was taken after the audio conservation between CTI of Surat railway station, Shailendra Verma and TTE, DB Sawant went viral on the social media platforms few days ago. In the audio conversation, the CTI is heard demanding Rs 25,000 for approving leave reserve (LR) demand made by the TTE.
Sources said both the TTE and the CTI were summoned to Mumbai for their statements regarding the leaked audio conservation and the corruption charges on Saturday. The senior railway officials investigating found the prima facie evidence against the CTI and that he was suspended from the spot with immediate effect.
GVL Satya Kumar, divisional railway manager (DRM), WR told TBT, “The officer in question has been suspended for his alleged corrupt practices. We have constituted an enquiry against the officer and a thorough investigation has been ordered. In the past, we have found many cases of corruption from the Surat”
Sources said the corrupt practice of allotting favorite coaches to the TTEs by the CTI was going from a very long time. There are over 100 TTEs on the Surat railway station, who are assigned duties on various trains.
The railways has fixed the protocols for assigning duties to the TTEs in the trains. The senior TTEs are assigned duty in the A/c class, junior TTEs are given the sleeper coaches and the freshers are given the task of checking ticekts in the general coaches. Apart from this, CTI is responsible to create a team under the LR category.
Sources said that Shailandra Sharma, CTI of Surat railway station was earlier posted at the Valsad railway station where he was grilled by the WR’s Vigilance department for his involvement in the fake travel allowance scam to the tune of Rs 3.5 lakh.
WR’s Vigilance team led by Zuber Shaikh had raided Shailendra Sharma after he was caught for fraudulently claiming the travel allowance between 2018 and 2020. Sharma’s corrupt practice was exposed after the vigilance team recovered concocted documents related to travel allowance claim forms from his possession.
Sources said that the CTI was earning hefty money by indulging in corrupt practices from the last many years. The railway activists have demanded departmental inquiry against Verma for his alleged involvement in corruption.