Shimla, Oct 5, 2020.
Recently 21 gullible farmers alleged that they have been duped for Rs 39 lakh by trio of middlemen posing as commission agents. Perhaps the state despite constituting a Special Investigation Team to probe into matter of cheating pertaining to apple growers of the state by the middlemen has failed to address.
The three middle men identified as Suchit Kumar resident of Maranchi village, post of Paraya of Gaya district of Bihar, Pradeep Kumar alias Pankaj Ranta and Shashi Negi alias Shahi Mahatma both are resident of Bijori (Rantari ) post of Seema, Tehsil Rohru of Shimla district cheated 21 farmers who have been ticked for Rs 39 lakh by pretending to be commission agents.
The complaint said that trio posing commission agents and apple traders turned up at the grading and packaging units of 21 farmers and cheated them after purchasing apple crop tune to Rs 39 lakh. Middlemen allured few local agents by paying them commission as middlemen Pradeep Kumar released a post paid cheque which bounced when the farmers went to claim the payment of their proceeds.
Ever since Pradeep is nowhere to be found and even the local agents have failed to trace any of the culprits. The cheated farmers are now on the road after losing their yearlong livelihood as they do not have any other source income to pay for the labour and apple pickers employed during the apple season.
Former Chief Engineer and prominent apple grower Devender Chauhan said that affected farmers want to book the above middlemen and also alarm other brother farmers who could or may have been duped by them as a trio of middlemen was active in entire Jubbal Kotkhai area to hatch a similar deal.
Cheated apple growers belonging to Kohlada , Sirthi, Purana Jubbal, Rampuri, Kayari, Nehnar, Mihana villages jointly lodged an FIR at Police Station Jubbal on Sep 19, 2020. Seeking legal action against the fraudsters they have sought a constitution of a SIT in the matter and to assure their payment after being the culprit on book.
According to information apple grower Jagdish Sharma was sold apple crops tune to Rs 4.20 lakh, Ramanand Rs 2.90 lakh, Humanand Rs 2.74 lakh, Kartar Singh and Kuldeep Kumar Rs 2.40 lakh each, Harish Kumar Rs 2.37 lakh, Harish Kumar 2.09 lakh and Daleep Singh Rs 1.60 Lakh, and Roshni Devi Rs 1.56 lakh , Devinder Chauhan Rs. 1.12 lakh and five other farmers below Rs one lakh.