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Telgi agrees to take truth test

Mumbai, Dec. 6: Abdul Karim Telgi, prime accused in the fake stamp paper scam, today said in Bangalore he was ready to sit for a lie-detector test as desired by the special investigation team probing the matter.

The mastermind, currently lodged in Bangalore central jail, may be brought here soon to help the investigation team as it probes the Rs 39,000-crore scam.

Telgiís revelations could prove costly for some, indicted Maharashtra police officers. The probe team has been demanding that former Mumbai police chief Ranjit Singh Sharma, former deputy joint police commissioner Sreedhar Vagal and seven others ó all of whom are in jail ó be subjected to a lie-detector test and other examinations that might help them obtain useful clues.

Elsewhere, the investigation team questioned T.K. Chaudhary, director-general of police, CID, in Pune. He was reportedly questioned for over three hours by the teamís chief, S.S. Puri. Lotankar, a former orderly, had cited Chaudhary as he had transferred an officer probing the scam, allegedly at Telgiís bidding.

The investigation team questioned Lotankar two days ago over his Telgi links and discovered later that the officer concerned had actually been transferred.

A Pune court today remanded Sharma in judicial custody till December 20 ó he had been in police custody until now. The court did so on a request by the probe team. Prosecutors told the court Sharma could be placed in judicial remand since he was not required for questioning at present.

The court also refused Sharmaís appeal to be shifted to hospital as his blood pressure had shot up and he was not well.

Things might get tougher still for the former police commissioner and the other arrested officers now that Telgi has agreed to a lie-detector test as well as a P300 brain fingerprinting examination and narco-analysis.

The investigation team has long been demanding that the mastermind and other main accused in the case be subjected to tests.

The team has also urged the court to allow it to obtain voice samples of Telgi, his brother Azim, police inspector Dattatraya Dal, assistant police inspector Dilip Kamath, Telgiís lawyer Rashid Kulkarni, MLA Anil Gote and Manoj Mehta. Sources say these people spoke to Telgi over telephone when he was in jail, with Karnataka police having proof of this.

The team has subjected two people to the P300 test, but results are awaited.

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