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Abdul Karim Telgi dead: The fake stamp paper scam you should know about

Author: Dimple Shah
by Dimple Shah
Posted: Oct 27, 2017
stamp papers

Abdul Karim Telgi, the kingpin of the multi-crore fake stamp paper scam that shook the country over a decade ago, died of multi-organ failure at a state-run hospital in Bengaluru on Thursday. He was battling for life for about a week.

The stamp paper scam

Acquiring a stamp paper licence in 1994, Telgi opened an office at Mint Road in Mumbai. He was said to have befriended several officials in the revenue ministry, stamp office and Nashik Security Press where stamp papers scam were printed.

Telgi was also accused of having used his political clout to get the machinery at the Nashik press declared as 'junk' only to buy it and setting it up at his office in Mumbai.

He also allegedly obtained the original dye for printing in connivance with Nashik press security officials and began printing fake stamp papers.

After the scam was busted, the investigation agencies discovered that he ran the business like a mega industry by recruiting 350 agents. They had sold the duplicate stamp papers of various denominations in bulk to banks, insurance companies, stock brokerage firms and corporate houses.

Top police officers and people in power were alleged to be his accomplices.

Arrest and aftermath

Telgi ran his fiefdom in counterfeit stamp papers for almost a decade till he ran out of luck in 2001 when his network was busted, leading to his arrest.

During the narco-analysis test, he had allegedly named some influential people as his partners in crime.

The arrest of two men transporting fake stamp papers in Bengaluru in 2000 had led to the unearthing of the scam.

Telgi had then claimed he was a small part of a huge scam involving some politicians and bureaucrats.

However, investigations had not brought to fore any such aspect.

After his arrest in Ajmer in November 2001 in connection with the fake stamp paper scam, Telgi was sentenced to 30 years’ rigorous imprisonment by a court five years later.

He was also slapped with a fine of Rs 202 crore.

The Karnataka government constituted an investigation team called 'STAMPIT' but as the countrywide network of the scam unfolded, the probe was taken over by the CBI.

In his first conviction in 2006 under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act and Indian Penal Code 120 (criminal conspiracy), Telgi was sentenced to 10 years rigorous imprisonment and for the remaining 20 years in four different cases.

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Author: Dimple Shah

Dimple Shah

Member since: May 08, 2017
Published articles: 448

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