An FIR has been lodged against Home Guard officials for allegedly withdrawing salaries of the force personnel by fraudulent means, Noida Police said on Thursday.
The case was registered late on Wednesday night at the Surajpur police station in Greater Noida, the area where the office of the District Commandant, Home Guards, Gautam Buddh Nagar is located, a senior officer said.
Superintendent of Police, Noida, Vineet Jaiswal said the FIR has been lodged under the Indian Penal Code sections 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant, or by banker, merchant or agent), 420 (fraud), 467, 468 and 471 (all three related to forgery of documents).
"Police station in charge of Surajpur is the complainant in the case, which has been lodged against officials working in the office of the district commandant, Home Guards, Gautam Buddh Nagar," Jaiswal told PTI.
"Investigation has already begun and other facts would be brought to light soon and necessary action taken," he added.
Salaries of scores of home guards deployed here were withdrawn despite them showing up for work only half of the time during May and June, prompting officials to launch a probe into the matter.
About Rs 7.5 lakh were withdrawn in salaries of these home guards, who reported on duty for only 50 per cent of the times, while their attendance was marked for the entire period, officials said, but suspected the fraud could be in crores.
Senior Superintendent of Police, Gautam Buddh Nagar, Vaibhav Krishna on Wednesday said the matter came to light in July when a platoon commander of the home guards unit here approached him with the allegations.
"A preliminary inquiry was done and the allegations were found true. This malpractice was found at seven police stations of Noida, following which a larger inquiry has been ordered across all the police stations in the district," Krishna had told PTI.
Part of the auxiliary force, the home guards are not permanent employees and are recruited on a casual basis. They do not have any fixed monthly salary and are paid based on the number of days of duty.
There are about 375 home guards, including 10 women, deployed in Gautam Buddh Nagar. A maximum 50 of them are attached with Traffic Police, while 10-15 home guards are deployed at each of the 23 police stations across Noida and Greater Noida, according to the officials.
The home guards in Uttar Pradesh do not enjoy privileges, including salary or treatment at par with police.
The Supreme Court had in July ordered a hike in the cost of deploying them. The daily allowance for the home guards is now Rs 672, up from the Rs 500 before the court order.
However, the state government later reduced the working days of home guards from 25 to just 15 in a month.