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Odisha forest official convicted in disproportionate assets case

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Berhampur, Mar 7:

A Vigilance court here today convicted a forest official on charges of amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.

Special Judge (Vigilance) convicted Bijay Kumar Hota and sentenced him to undergo rigorous imprisonment (RI) for one year and to pay a fine of Rs 10, 000, in default of payment of fine, to undergo RI for three months more for the offence under Prevention of Corruption Act.

He was convicted under section 13(2) r/w 13(1) of Prevention of Corruption Act for possession of disproportionate assets beyond his known sources of income.

Notably, Vigilance sleuths had conducted simultaneous raids on office and houses of Bijay Kumar Hota while he was the former Forest Range Officer, Podamari under DFO, Paralakhemundi in Gajapati district.

The officials of the anti-corruption wing had on September 23, 2009 simultaneously raided his residential houses at Sidharthanagar and Padmanagar in Berhampur and office-cum-residence at Podamari to unearth ill-gotten properties.

Following investigation, a chargesheet was filed in the court which convicted the forest official.

Currently, Hota is working as Assistant Conservator of Forest, Forest Guard Training School in G Udaygiri in Kandhamal district.