Four arrested in Bengaluru BBMP bed-for-bribe scam

The police started the investigation following an expose by BJP Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya.
Tejasvi Surya speaking at a presser
Tejasvi Surya speaking at a presser

Police in Bengaluru have arrested four persons as of May 5 evening for alleged corruption and malpractice in allocating beds through the BBMP’s centralised bed allocation system.

The four accused are Rihan,Shashi, Rohit and Netravati,Joint  Commissioner of Police (Crime) Sandeep Patil told TNM. He said four others have been questioned so far, including a man named Suresh. Though the police wanted to arrest Suresh, he was isolated as he is COVID-19 positive.

He added that two FIRs (first information reports) have been registered in connection with this case. The police started the investigation following an expose by BJP Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya. Sandeep Patil said that they were able to trace payments to two people.

The cases originally registered in south and south east zones have been transferred to the Central Crime Branch as asked by the City Police Commissioner Kamal Pant.

Jt Commissioner Patil added that following these two cases the police are conducting searches in all eight zonal war rooms of the city.

Speaking on one of the FIRs that was registered by Jayanagar Police, DCP South Harish Pandey told TNM that they have booked three persons—Shashi, Rihan and Suresh.

“Rihan is a dentist and was in charge of bed booking in one of the zones, Shashi was his operator, especially in the night shift. Suresh was in charge of beds in Bommanahalli zone.  A lot of discrepancies happened under their watch,” he said.

He added, “They were appointed to allot beds to the needy, but they have rigged the system in a way to get pecuniary gains. We have been able to establish 10 to 12 patients from whom bribes were taken.”

He said they got ICU beds booked in asymptomatic patient’s’s names and sold them to patients who could pay them. “They were allowing people to jump the queue not because someone needed the bed, but for monetary gains. They were blocking beds for asymptomatic patients and then taking money from others who need it,” he said.

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