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The Delhi Police have come up with a cunning plan to save money recovered as evidence.
Instead of keeping it in the unwisely named "safe room" where they say it decays or is eaten by insects, the department is now going to invest the confiscated funds in fixed deposits.
Folks, the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirms that termites do indeed eat money. But I'm compelled to reflect on the similar African phrase (which comes to me via Chinua Achebe).
Just how much cash HAS disappeared from the department's evidence lockers into the stomachs of bugs? And, I'm wondering, have the partially eaten notes been produced to show curious entomologists just how the phenom works? How do the millions of Indians who keep their "black money" (i.e. funds hidden from the tax man) in mattresses or safety deposit boxes avoid the creepy crawlies?
Apparently, the court is keen to find out, too. Judges hearing a recent case involving about $500,000 in recovered funds opted to let the police department put the money into a fixed deposit with a local bank. At today's 10 percent interest rates, the argument ran, the money would double or more in value before the case was decided.
According to the courts, the interest may serve to pay back the hundreds of investors allegedly defrauded of their money by CEO Rupesh Verma in the so-called Om Sainath Car Rental case.
Unless the termites get into the bank vault, that is.