Bijulal tested his scam with Rs 3,000, then did over 20 fraud transactions

Bijulal tested his scam with Rs 3,000, then did over 20 fraud transactions
Bijulal being taken for COVID test.

Thiruvananthapuram: M R Bijulal, the senior accountant arrested for a fraud in the state exchequer, was not successful in transferring Rs 2 crore from the Thiruvananthapuram collector's treasury account on July 27, but the government had lost money through his earlier transfers of Rs 77 lakh, a preliminary investigation by a team led by the finance secretary has found.

The government has dismissed Bijulal from service after the fraud came to light.

Bijulal made the first such illegal transfer on December 23 last year. He transferred Rs 3,000 to his own account that day as a test. He cancelled the bill as soon as the transfer was made. Bijulal started the fraud after he detected a bug in the treasury software.

After his first transaction, he waited for a while to see if the transfer had been noticed. When he was assured that he would not be caught, he started transferring money again. In over 20 transactions till July, he had transferred Rs 77 lakh to his and his wife's accounts.

Bijulal continued with the fraud to play online rummy and to get back the money he had lost in the game. When his wife and relatives asked him about the source of the money, he told them that he had won it playing rummy.

One day, the treasury officer had wanted to go home early and he had given Bijulal the user name and password to close the account. Bijulal used these details to carry out the scam.

Bijulal transferred Rs 62.32 lakh to his and his wife’s bank accounts from the Rs 77 lakh that was moved to the treasury savings account. Of this, all but Rs 25 lakh were withdrawn. As a result, the government lost Rs 62.32 lakh, but Bijulal will be charged with attempting a fraud of Rs 2.77 crore.

Bijulal was caught while trying to transfer a huge amount of Rs 2 crore. His earlier illegal transfers had given him the confidence that he could pull this off, too, officials said.

When the illegal transfer was found out, the director of treasuries asked the banks concerned to freeze Bijulal’s accounts. The police and treasury officials found Rs 19 lakh in two of his accounts.

The police arrested Bijulal when he was on his way to Coimbatore after the fraud was detected.

The treasury director has instructed officials to check if anyone else has tried this method to transfer treasury money.

According to officials, Bijulal was “addicted” to online rummy. He had lost lakhs in the card game and wanted to recover the loss by playing even more for which he needed money, they said. He needed a large amount to win back the huge losses he had suffered, they said.

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