3 held for coning man by posing as Raj Kapoor's relatives

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Nagpur, Jun 8 (UNI) Three people, including two women, one of whom is an office-bearer of a political party, have been arrested and a search has been launched for four other suspects, for allegedly duping a man of Rs 10 lakh by posing as relatives of showman Raj Kapoor, police said today.

According to police, the tricksters, identified as Nitika Srinivas Rao (32), Satpal Harpal Kewalramani (50) and Durga Pandurang Rokde (36), were nabbed while trying to play a similar fraud in Mumbai on Friday. Of these, Nitika is an office bearer of the Nagpur City Congress Committee, while Kewalramani is a former personal assistant of a minister in the Maharashtra cabinet.

The other suspects, identified as Ashok Paikwar (50), Arun Deshmukh, Prashant Hedaoo (35), and another person identified as Musa (25), are absconding, they said.

The family of Jatin Sial, nephew of Raj Kapoor, owns about 25 acres of land in Nagpur city. Durga Rokde, who is a property broker, told the complainant, Manaklal Sitaram Heda, that the land was for sale.

Later, Durga arranged Heda's meeting with Nitika, who posed as Namita Kapoor, a relative of the showman, and Kewalramani, who posed as Jatin Sial.

A deal was finalised, and Heda paid an advance of Rs 10 lakh to the trio, with half the money in cash and the other half by demand draft. However, in spite of the passage of several weeks, Durga and the others did not arrange for the signing of the final sale deed, which raised Heda's suspicion prompting him to inform the police.

During preliminary investigation, the police discovered that the trio was trying to sell off the same piece of land to another person, identified as Sanjay Band, by telling him the identical story. The police alerted Band, but asked him to play along to help nab the culprits.

After negotiations, Band asked Durga, Nitika and Kewalramani to come to Mumbai to sign the sale agreement. Sleuths from the city police then laid a trap in the metropolis and nabbed the three red-handed as soon as they had signed the documents, and brought them to Nagpur late last evening. The three have been remanded to police custody till Tuesday.

The police have registered an offence under sections 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 466 (forgery of record of court or of public register, etc), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code, and are investigating the case.

Of the other four suspects, Hedaoo is said to be a resident of Bandra and Musa of Vashi, in Mumbai. The police are now investigating their role in the matter.

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