A case against thirty-one people has been registered in Indore in Madhya Pradesh for allegedly selling in the open market Rs 79 lakh worth of provisions meant for fair price shops, officials said on Tuesday.
The district administration has invoked the stringent National Security Act against the main accused, they added.
"Between April and December, 2020, ration worth Rs 79 lakh under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana, meant for distribution from 12 fair price shops during the COVID-19 outbreak, was sold in the open market," said Indore Collector Manish Singh.
The ration mafia, in connivance with shop owners, siphoned off large quantities of wheat, rice, salt, sugar, gram, tur dal etc, he said.
"The main accused are ration shops organisation's president Bharat Dave, Shyam Dave and Pramod Dahigude. Action under NSA has been initiated against them. Ten FIRs against 31 persons, including these three and former food controller RC Meena, have been lodged in different police stations," Mr Singh added.
Mr Meena prevented his junior officials from probing the irregularities in the right manner and was suspended on January 13 by Indore Divisional Commissioner Pavan Sharma, the official said.