JE in Odisha caught on cam while taking bribe, admin begins probe

Bolangir: In a disgraceful act, a Junior Engineer (JE) posted at Puintala block of Bolangir district was caught on camera while accepting bribe from a person. The video which is in possession of OTV, purportedly shows JE Satya Narayan Tripathy accepting bribe from a ward member to clear pending bill on account of road construction in Michhapali village under Khaliapali panchayat.

As per reports, the local Sarpanch and ward member had constructed the concrete road in Michhapali village under the central scheme. But to clear an outstanding bill of Rs 1 lakh, the JE has allegedly been demanding Rs 12,000 bribe from the Sarpanch and ward member.

Left with no option, the ward member Ashwini Guru arranged Rs 10,000 and gave the money to the JE, while all this time, Tripathy was unaware that a video is being shot by another person present at the spot, who happens to be a friend of Guru. In the video, the JE can be seen demanding Rs 2,000 more to clear the bill.

Asked about the incident, Tripathy initially refuted the charges, but later agreed to have accepted the money to clear the bill.

Demanding stringent action against the JE, complainant Ashwini Guru said the percentage commission (PC) practice must be stopped. “With the help of a friend, I was able to record a video while the JE was taking the bribe. The Junior Engineer has been demanding money for every work order and because of this many files of the panchayat are pending.”

The Bolangir district administration has reportedly begun a probe into the incident. “We will initiate a departmental inquiry and action will be taken thereafter,” said Parikshita Sethi, Additional Collector, Bolangir.