An year after death, Abdul Karim Telgi acquitted in Stamp paper scam case
Mumbai, Dec 31: Almost a year after his death, a Nashik Court on Monday acquitted Abdul Karim Telgi, who was accused of being the kingpin of a multi-crore counterfeit stamp paper scam.
Telgi died at a hospital in Bengaluru on October 23, 2017. He was suffering from brain fever.
It is alleged that between 1993 and 2002, he cultivated officers in the government security press in Nashik and purchased machinery at government auctions to print counterfeit stamp papers.
Telgi was arrested several years back in connection with the multi-crore fake stamp paper racket. He was convicted in several cases of counterfeiting.
Telgi's mother was Shariefabee Ladsaab Telgi, and his father was an employee of Indian Railways. His father died while he was young. Telgi paid for his own education at Sarvodaya Vidyalaya Khanapur, an English medium school, by selling fruit and vegetables on trains. Eventually, he moved to Saudi Arabia. Seven years later, he returned to India, at which time he allegedly began a career in counterfeiting, originally focusing on fake passports.
Telgi was alleged to have moved to more complex counterfeiting when he began to counterfeit stamp paper. He appointed 350 people as agents who sold the fakes to bulk purchasers, including banks, insurance companies, and stock brokerage firms. The size of the alleged scam was estimated to be more than Rs 200 billion (US$3.1 billion). One aspect of the scandal that caused much concern was that it required the involvement of many police officers and other government employees.
On 17 January 2006, Telgi and several associates were sentenced to 30 years rigorous imprisonment. On 28 June 2007, Telgi was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for 13 years for another aspect of the scandal. He was also fined Rs 10 billion (US$160 million). The Income Tax Department requested that Telgi's property is confiscated to pay the fine. He had been in jail for 13 years. Mudrank (The Stamp) was a film based on the stamp scandal. It was finished in 2008, but Telgi filed legal challenges to prevent its release. Telgi alleged that the details covered in the film would damage his legal appeals.