The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered a case against two postal department officials in Uttar Pradesh's Pratapgarh district for allegedly demanding a bribe of Rs 100 under the guise of service charge from a commission agent. The FIR was registered on November 30 on a complaint to the CBI in Lucknow by Prabhat Kumar Singh of Kunda town in Pratapgarh.
The complainant claimed that he used to go to the post office regularly with his wife to deposit money collected from individuals who wanted to put their savings in the post office savings schemes. His wife works as a commission agent for the post office in Kunda and gets regular commission from there.
According to Singh's complaint which is now part of the FIR, two officials at the post office - Santosh Kumar Saroj (Supervisor) and Suraj Mishra (postal assistant) -- told him that they will have to pay Rs 100 bribe on every Rs 20,000 deposited in the post office. Singh had gone to the post office to deposit Rs 60,000 on his wife's behalf on November 27 for which Saroj and Mishra charged him Rs 300 bribe.
Earlier, the accused postal department employees had taken Rs 500 and Rs 300 for deposits of Rs 99,400 and Rs 59,920 that Singh and his wife made on November 25 and 26 respectively. Saroj and Mishra told Singh and his wife that the money they were charging was a service charge. They had also threatened that his wife's work with the post office would be stopped if they did not pay the money.
CBI sources said the agency verified the allegations and found them to be true. A CBI spokesperson said: "CBI intervened in a public complaint where poor villagers had to bribe to get their own money deposited (in the post office). There was a need to assist the poor rural people. This modus operandi impacted several villages in the area."