Hyderabad: The sleuths of Anti Corruption Bureau have seized Rs 1.99 crore cash of accused Doctor and former director of Indian Medical Service Devika Rani. This is in addition to the Rs 6.76 Crore cash seized earlier.

To recall, several government officials including three doctors serving in the Insurance Medical Services (IMS), were arrested in an alleged multi-crore scam.

They include Director of IMS , Dr Ch Devika Rani, joint director, Dr Padma, assistant director (store) K. Vasantha Indira, Shamshabad ESI dispensary pharmacist grade-II M. Radhika. Others include senior assistant V. Harshavardhan, Omni Medi managing director K. Srihari Babu, and company representative Ch Siva Nagaraju.

Ch Devika Rani is accused of colluding with officials, they prepared fake invoices, bills/ records of purchase of medicines and other medical equipment and cheated the government exchequer to the tune of Rs 11.69 crore. Several pharmacy company directors were arrested for involvement in the scam.

Extensive investigation into the scam, led the sleuths of ACB to Rs 1.99 Crore cash on 16th of December. "The money was in form of demand draft from a chit fund company that were invested in the monthly chits by the accused officer Devika Rani and her family member in Telangana and Tamil Nadu state. The seized demand drafts will be deposited in the court" officials of ACB said.

Earlier cash of Rs 4.47 Crore and Rs 2.29 crore was seized from a real estate company where the accused, her family and benamies had invested. With the latest seizer, the total amounts to 8.75 Crore.

The scam broke recently after a vigilance inquiry into purchases made by IMS for ESI hospitals in the state, found medicines which were not needed, purchased to favour a few firms and medicines regularly used were purchased at relatively high prices.

Inquiries revealed that all such firms that supplied medicines to ESI in this manner were owned by close family members of Devika Rani and her benami persons. The State Government then ordered the ACB to investigate the inquiry findings.

ACB registered a case and started an inquiry. After two months of inquiry, ACB sleuths went into action. Though the vigilance report suggested Devika Rani and other accused had siphoned around Rs 300 Crores, initial inquiries made by ACB found the loss was around Rs 10 Crores. Months later, on 1st of September another 4.4 crore cash was seized by the ACB.

Coreena Suares

Coreena Enet Suares is the Editor of NewsMeter. Her stories have been published in the Deccan Chronicle Newspaper and the Asian Age. Coreena began her career as a News Anchor. Throughout her journey, she has been able to build a strong network with people from all walks of life. She is an alumnus of Edward R. Murrow Program for Journalists- Research and Investigation, a flagship initiative of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) Coreena is also a certified fact-checker by Google India Initiative. She has attended the 'Defence Correspondents Course 2019, through which she visited Indo- Pak border, besides traveling on a War-ship and insight into operations of Fighter aircraft. Coreena's focus areas are anti-crime investigation agencies and Defence reporting.

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