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Southern States - Andhra Pradesh Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

SIT probing Telgi's Vizag connection

By Santosh Patnaik

VISAKHAPATNAM DEC. 28. The Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up by the State Government to go into the activities of the prime accused in the fake stamp paper scam, Abdul Karim Telgi in Visakhapatnam and Hyderabad, is probing his reported contacts with a city-based woman named Andalu.

Though details regarding the woman are yet to be ascertained, sources said the State Police recently received clues from their counterparts in Tamil Nadu that Telgi had "close contacts'' with Andalu.

"We are examining the clues given by the Tamil Nadu Police who have also registered cases against Telgi. At this juncture, we can't divulge any information,'' a senior official connected with probe, told The Hindu.

The scam was detected in the city in April 2000 when the regional office of Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd. lodged a complaint that they had doubts about the genuineness of stamps worth Rs. 10,000 bought by them from Srinivasa Enterprises Marketing Division, a stamp vendor, Bangarampeta, Visakhapatnam.

After registering a case under crime No. 82/2000 under Sections 120 (b), 225, 258, 259 and 260 of IPC by the IV Town Police Station, raids were conducted at various places in the city leading to seizure of fake stamps valued at Rs. 5.18 crores.

Police also arrested K. Venkatesh, Mallesh Balappa Dulanwar, Narayana Maruthi Goud, Suresh Ramachandra Desai and Kodamanchili Laxman Rao (A-2 to 6) immediately though Telgi (A-1) could not be arrested. All of them had to be released on bail due to failure to file the chargesheet within the stipulated time.

Telgi, who has tested HIV-positive, is now under judicial custody in Karnataka. The case diary (CD) and all other relevant documents were handed over to the SIT in Hyderabad some time ago by the IV Town CI and the investigation officer in the case, Ishaq Ahmad.

The SIT is trying to get more clues on where Telgi stayed and his acquaintances in the city when he spent a few days in Visakhapatnam in connection with the launching of his network in February 2000.

Venkatesh (A-2), a resident of Hyderabad and a native of Madanapalle in Chittoor district, visited the city on Telgi's instructions and took a portion on rent in a shopping complex in Dabagardens with the assistance of Laxman Rao (A-6), a local youth. Later, Telgi himself appointed several sales executives to find "clients'' for the fake stamps.

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