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Telgi whiff reaches NE

Guwahati, Feb. 14: Police last night seized a large number of fake stamp papers from two places here and arrested a couple of persons in what could be the first whiff of the Telgi scam unfolding in Assam.

City additional superintendent of police Bibekananda Das said the seized stamp papers are worth Rs 14 lakh.

“We seized 280 non-judicial stamps worth Rs 5,000 each. Two persons were arrested and two others detained in this connection,” he said.

In the first raid, the police found 120 stamp papers at the residence of one Salim Ahmed in the Shantipur area. Besides Ahmed, two of his accomplices — Waheb Ali and Samsul Ali — were picked up and they provided the lead for another haul of 160 fake stamp papers from the residence of Mukut Patgiri in the Dighalipukhari area. Patgiri was also arrested.

Sources in Bhorolumukh police station, where a case in this connection has been registered, said the four were interrogated throughout the day and would be produced in court tomorrow. They said Ahmed runs a boys’ hostel in Santipur, while Patgiri is the owner of an incense stick unit.

Not ruling out the involvement of the Abdul Karim Telgi fake stamp paper cartel in the case, sources said police were exploring the modus operandi and other details of the racket.

Preliminary investigations, the sources said, confirmed that the papers were printed outside the state.

Sources said some big names might be linked to the racket as it has been established that the Telgi cartel has a widespread network. “Though it is too early to say but you never know what might unfold next. This could just be the tip of the iceberg. They might have the backing of influential people and it could be a well-entrenched racket,” a police source said.

Former Mumbai police commissioner R.S. Sharma and Telugu Desam Party legislator C. Krishna Yadav are already behind bars for their alleged involvement in the multi-crore scandal.

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