The Maharashtra Police have arrested 23 people from Nanded and its neighbouring districts in the last six months for allegedly extorting money from government officials and private persons by misusing the Right To Information (RTI) Act, a senior official said on Sunday. Special Inspector General of Police, Nanded range, Nisar Tamboli told that 23 FIRs were registered in the last six months at different police stations in Nanded, Hingoli, Parbhani and other areas.
At least 23 people have been arrested in these cases till now and more arrests are likely in the coming days, he said. "We started taking action against these people, who claimed to be RTI activists, after receiving complaints against them. These people were filing RTI queries against government officials as well as private persons at various places, including in the state secretariat 'Mantralaya' (in Mumbai), and demanding money from them,” he said.
During a probe, it was found that 10 to 15 victims had approached police against a few of these accused persons, the official said. In Nanded's Deglur police station, 10 victims had complained against two persons, based on which FIRs were registered against the duo, he said.
After searching the residences of various accused, police found more than 100 fake RTI documents, the official said. Some of the arrested accused were having police protection and a few of them also had arms licenses. But, after the arrest, their police security has been removed and their arms licenses seized, he said.
All the accused were arrested under relevant Indian Penal Code sections, including extortion, the official said, adding that further investigation was underway.
(With PTI Inputs)