CBI questions Kul Bhushan again the Second Consequtive day

NEW DELHI: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Thursday again questioned Railway Board member (electrical), Kul Bhushan, in connection with its preliminary enquiry (PE) into alleged corrupt practices during the official’s tenure.

CBI sources said Bhushan was called at the agency headquarters for questioning in connection with the PE — registered soon after bribery scandal involving former railway minister Pawan Bansal’s nephew Vijay Singla had surfaced — that relates to several alleged corrupt practices including purchase of “benami” properties.

It is alleged that Bhushan had acquired many benami properties worth several crores from railway contractors in lieu of favours promised to them. Citing one such instance, the sources claimed, that a flat worth Rs.1.80 crore was allegedly purchased as a benami property in Bangalore as an accommodation for his son, who worked abroad and was expecting to be posted in the city. But, as luck would have it, the son got posted in Delhi instead of Bangalore.

It is alleged that Bhushan also helped in nurturing vendor cartels at Level II in Rail Land Development Authority (RDSA) that wanted to stop contractors from upgrading from Level I to Level II to maintain monopoly in bagging contracts.

He allegedly helped a renowned builder by granting relief in terms and condition for the development of RDSA prime land at Sarai Rohilla in Delhi. He diluted penalty and extended deadlines thus helping the builder at the cost of exchequer, sources said.

He allegedly shared eligibility details of proposed Railway Signals factory at Chandigarh with the interested contractors at initial stage. It has been alleged that Bhushan was seeking a partnership of 15%-20% in the Rs.150 crore factory, which was to be set up on Public Private Partnership (PPP) model, in lieu of favours extended to the contractors, CBI sources said.

It is alleged that he was influencing transfers and postings in the railway with the help of middlemen and other individuals.

Bhushan is also under the CBI’s scanner for alleged corruption in a separate enquiry related to the purchase of coach factories for the Kolkata Metro.