Babus, engineers exploit bugs in IT system; gobble up ₹1.40 crore of salaries of retired, dead employees

Jaipur: In Jawahar Nagar sub-division of the Water Works Department of Rajasthan Government, three engineers and three clerks embezzled ₹1.40 crore by stealing the Privilege Leave (PL) encashment and salary amounts of retired employees and the employees on long leave. Not only this, they also credited the arrears of employees who have been promoted and salaries of deceased employees into the accounts of other persons. Some employees simply doubled their salary amounts.

Approval obtained from asst engineers

The clerks got approvals on the files from assistant engineers. After this, through the pay-manager system, large amounts were transferred to bank accounts of other people and employees between October 2014 and March 2018.

The disclosure of the fraud in the special audit report created a stir in the department. This has put a question mark on the pay-manager IT system used to disburse salaries. The audit team has recommended recovering the entire embezzled amount from the accused. It is suspected that similar stratagems to embezzle funds have taken place in other sub-divisions and departments.

Records of dead and absent employees being verified

The audit team looked into salaries, salary arrears and privilege leave encashment amounts paid to retired and serving employees between the years 2007 and 2017. The service records of absent and deceased employees were also checked. The arrears of pay revision, accumulated over the leave period of employees, who have been absent for the past 5-10 years was also drawn. It was also found that the accused stole funds from PL encashment of retired employees for leaves of up to 300 days.

Exploited bugs in the system

In the government departments, for the last five years, Pay Manager online IT system has been implemented for employees’ salaries, arrears and other payments. Through the IT system, the salary is directly transferred to the bank accounts of employees.

These accused engineers and babus changed the account number of the employees in the pay-manager system and embezzled the amount by transferring it the accounts of others.

Same bills processed twice

In the pay-manager, the same bills were accepted twice by the system and the amount was transferred to the dependents of deceased employees. The system accepted the fake bills despite change in the number of bills and the bill amount.

Employees involved in the embezzlement exploited these flaws in the IT system. The audit team has also recommended improvement in pay-manager’s IFMS system.

Action will be taken against the fraudsters: ACE

Dinesh Saini, Additional Chief Engineer of the department, said that the audit report has been received and is being examined. Strict action will be taken against embezzlers.