Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: A senior police official on Saturday claimed that Akash Pathak, son of suspended IFS officer Abhay Kant Pathak, who was recently arrested in connection with a recruitment fraud, was never an employee with Tata Motors.

The officer, who is part of the team investigating the case against Akash, said that Tata Motors had been contacted during the course of investigation into the case pertaining to the alleged cheating of scores of job aspirants by Akash on the pretext of providing employment in the blue chip company. “The Company (Tata Motors) has clarified that Akash Pathak was never their employee,” the official said. It is said that Akash had pocketed Rs 6 lakh from each of the aspirants in lieu of jobs.

The officer, quoting Tata Motors officials, said that the company never claimed GST reimbursement on the vouchers of Sky King, a tours and travel firm in Bhubaneswar through which the tainted IFS official’s son had booked charter flights and other vehicles .

Earlier on December 1, the Managing Partner of Sky King lodged an FIR at the Kharavela Nagar Police Station against Abhay Kant and Akash accusing the father-son duo of defrauding the company of over Rs 65 lakh.

In the complaint, the travel agency alleged that Akash, impersonating himself as the Managing Director (I/C) for the passenger vehicle division of Tata Motors Limited (TML) had booked charter flights, air tickets and hotels for several locations.

The company had prepared a total bill of around Rs 2.78 crore for the whirlwind travels.

However, Akash and his father had paid Rs 2.13 crore and allegedly refused to pay the outstanding bill of Rs 65,16,233.

Earlier on Saturday, Akash, during his production before a court had claimed that he was an employee of Tata Motors. “But the company is not supporting me now,” he had stated.

“It is a conspiracy against me and my family. We are not allowed to speak anything now. I will reveal everything and give all the details after I come out,” said Akash to reporters.

Both Akash and his father Abhay Kant Pathak were remanded to judicial custody following their production before the court on completion of their first remand.

The Vigilance department did not seek an extension of remand for the father-son duo who have been accused of acquiring disproportionate assets and cheating people on pretext of providing jobs.