KOLKATA, Aug 15 (IANS): Cash and jewellery worth nearly Rs.21 crore was seized from the residence of a municipal engineer in West Bengal's Howrah district, police said on Saturday.
Following complaints of bribery, Kolkata police's anti-corruption wing on Friday raided the house of Pranab Adhikary, a sub-assistant engineer with the municipality.
During their search of the premises, they stumbled across bundles of notes hidden beneath the floor of his house.
It took almost 21 hours and three note-counting machines to ascertain the value of cash recovered.
While initially it was reported that the haul was over Rs.24 crore, an officer of the anti-corrupting wing later clarified it to be nearly Rs.21 crore.
The cash seized was a little over Rs.20 crore. Besides, jewellery and post office deposits worth Rs.14 lakh and Rs.58 lakh, respectively, were also found, said an officer.
The money was stashed under the tiles of the bathroom, under the mattress and sofa. Cash was also found in a refrigerator and television set.
"We have arrested both Adhikary and his son Tanmay. A case has been initiated against them under Prevention of Corruption Act," said the officer.
A city court later remanded them to custody till August 17.
Adhikary was employed at the erstwhile Bally municipality's buildings' department. The Bally municipality has been merged with the Howrah Municipal Corporation now.
Meanwhile, A.P. Singh, a local promoter who filed a police complaint against Adhikary for demanding a bribe, said that the government official worked in collusion with the authorities of Bally municipality.
"He was the last word in Bally municipality. I had brought the matter to the notice of the previous chairman of Bally municipality but he said that promoters will have to pay the engineer for getting work done," Singh told media persons.
The previous chairman, a local leader from the Communist Party of India - Marxist, denied the allegations and accused Singh of hatching a conspiracy against him.