(Eds: Updating with details about arrest) New Delhi, Oct 11 (PTI) The CBI has arrested three people including a scientist of the Central Ground Water Board and a technician of the Institute of Microbial Technology in an alleged bribery case of Rs 1.5 lakh, an agency spokesperson said today.

Sanjay Pandey, a group-B scientist posted at Board’s Chandigarh office; technician Chander Prakash Midha of the IMT, a body under the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research; and Dinesh Kumar have been arrested, the spokesperson said here.

A fourth person, Swaraj Kandoi, who had applied for a no-objection certificate for his water packaging business, has also been named in the CBI FIR in the case.

Pandey and Midha allegedly helped Kandoi in arranging the NOC in lieu of Rs 2 lakh bribe, the FIR alleged.

They allegedly pushed the NOC application form from the regional office of the Board in Chandigarh, where Pandey was posted, to CGWA in Delhi with recommendation for issuance of NOC and permission for allowing industrial use of groundwater.

“It was also alleged that an amount of Rs 2 lakh as illegal gratification was agreed between the accused in lieu of said favour,” a CBI spokesperson said.

Midha directed his employee Dinesh Kumar to receive the alleged bribe. He also allegedly directed Kumar to pay Rs 50,000 to one Prem Ranjan, while rest was to be carried back to Chandigarh, the CBI FIR has alleged.

The CBI laid a trap and arrested Pandey, Midha and Kumar, the spokesperson said.

“Searches were conducted at the premises of accused. A cash of Rs 4 lakh; USD 500 and Japanese Yen 36,000 alongwith other documents including property have been recovered from the residence of Scientist-B,” the official said.

The CBI has alleged in the FIR that Pandey and Midha, who also runs a consultancy firm for groundwater-using industries, take between Rs 1.5 lakh to 2 lakh to arrange no-objection certificates from Central Ground Water Authority in Delhi.

CGWB works under union water resources ministry and is responsible for regulating the use of groundwater and issuance of NOCs to various private and government institutions.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.