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Telgi cellmates in khaki held

Mumbai, Dec. 10: The khaki corner in the stamp paper scandal box grew more crowded today with the arrest of two police officers who apparently helped alleged mastermind Abdul Karim Telgi run the racket from a Bangalore jail.

The team investigating the fake stamp paper scam in Karnataka arrested the former superintendent of the Parapana Agrahara Central Jail, P.N. Jayasimha, and his subordinate Nanjappa for links with Telgi.

Jayasimha is now posted as the principal of the Prison Training School in Mysore, while Nanjappa is the assistant superintendent of the jail.

R. Srikumar, who is heading the probe in Karnataka, said the officers were co-conspirators in Telgi’s fake stamp paper business and “actively associated with him while he was in jail”.

The two allowed free access of cellphone to Telgi and helped him to continue, expand and monitor the sale and circulation of fake stamp papers in different parts of the country, Srikumar added. He said there was evidence that documents were fabricated with “dishonest and fraudulent intention” for “pecuniary gains”.

Telgi is still in Bangalore Central Jail, though the special investigation team of Maharashtra is trying to get him here to interrogate him.

The last time Telgi was in Mumbai, Maharashtra police’s “custody” of Telgi turned into a farce with the accused “enjoying tea and biscuits” in a hotel with the policemen in charge of his transit remand waiting on him.

Karnataka police said both the arrested officers established contact with Telgi and his associates and “took care” of him as he oversaw his rapidly expanding empire from the prison.

Like stamp, like skin

In Pune, police claimed they have found tiger skins, claws, teeth and a deer skin from the house of M.C. Mulani, an assistant police commissioner now arrested under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act.

An officer in the raiding team said as the animals were on the Schedule 1 endangered list, Mulani would be charged with another case.

But, in an ironical twist, chief conservator of forest Prakash Thosare said tonight that the tiger skin appeared to be a fake, much like the stamps in the racket.

Mulani is alleged to have asked for a bribe of Rs 2 crore from Telgi. Sources have claimed that Karnataka police have in their possession secretly recorded tapes containing Mulani’s conversation with Telgi.

Mulani is alleged to have accepted Rs 15 lakh from Telgi for dropping the names of his wife and daughter from the chargesheet filed by Pune police.

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