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Did Abdul Karim Telgi Give Money to Veerappan ?

T.G. Sangram Singh, the former assistant commissioner of police detained by the CBI in connection with the stamp paper controversy, has connected the scandal to Veerappan’s abduction of actor Rajkumar three years prior.

In a confessional statement, Singh told the extra chief metropolitan magistrate that the profits of the stamp paper case, which associated Abdul Karim Telgi, were directed via a cousin of the then chief minister, S.M. Krishna, to reimburse the Rs 20 crore ransom for the thespian’s release.

The detained police officer described in detail how he broke the stamp paper scam in April 1997 and how he saw Telgi at the home of Siddhartha, Krishna’s son-in-law.

Singh also claimed that on April 10, 1997, he had conducted a search on a hotel in Bangalore and discovered fake stamps, stamp sheets, rubber seals, and chemical equipment. He claimed to have taken five people into custody.

In order to provide the ransom money to Tamil star Rajnikanth’s secretary during the hostage situation, Singh claimed the police brass had exploited him.

The officer clarified that, following Rajkumar’s kidnapping, he had spotted Telgi in Siddhartha’s home in September 2000.

Did Abdul Karim Telgi Give Money to Veerappan ?

Did Abdul Karim Telgi Give Money to Veerappan ?

The drug analysis of brigand assistant Kanakraj has revealed that a ransom of Rs 40 crore was exchanged for the release of Kannada thespian Rajkumar, who was kidnapped on July 30, 2000, by sandalwood smuggler Veerappan.

A major controversy is brewing over a revelation given by a former assistant commissioner of police regarding the role played by several top Karnataka leaders, including former chief minister S.M. Krishna, in bribing feared bandit Veerappan and covering up the involvement of a former Karnataka minister in the Telgi scam. It may potentially destabilize Karnataka’s recently formed coalition government. 

Sangram Singh, the former ACP leader who is currently being held by the CBI, has identified Ghulam Nabi Azad, a minister in Dr. Manmohan Singh’s United Progressive Alliance (UPA) administration, which has led to the subject getting national attention. 

The Lok Sabha had to adjourn early because to the shocking allegations made by Ananth Kumar, a former federal minister, and other Karnataka BJP members. This shows how much of a national crisis this might potentially become.

Sangram Singh, who is currently retired from the military, was detained by the CBI on Wednesday and appeared before a magistrate on Thursday.

Suspected to have been an accomplice of Abdul Karim Lala Telgi, Singh was the ACP in Bangalore when the brigand Veerappan abducted Kannada film star Rajkumar a few years back. 

Telgi is said to have been the mastermind of a multi-state, multi-crore stamp paper fraud that has already claimed the lives of several police officers nationwide, including the previous commissioner of the Bombay Police.

During his deposition before the magistrate on Thursday, Singh revealed the alarming information that he had brought Rs 200 million to Chennai and given money to the manager of the very successful actor Rajnikant. During that period, Rajnikant actively participated in talks between the Karnataka government and the leaders of Tamil Nadu.

Even further, Singh claimed to have carried the money on behalf of former chief minister S.M. Krishna, contentious former minister and Krishna’s blue-eyed boy, D.K. Shivakumar, Additional Director General of Police Dr. P.S. Ramanujam, who was then in charge of intelligence, and Inspector General of Police Jayaprakash, his deputy. He said he had been to Chennai twice.

There were persistent rumors both during and after the kidnapping incident that Veerappan had freed Rajkumar after receiving payment. In a later spectacular book, former Karnataka director general of police C. Dinkar, who oversaw the force at the time, even made hints about it.

Who is Abdul Karim Telgi ? 

In 1961, Abdul Karim Telgi was born in Khanapur, Karnataka. Telgi, the two brothers, and their mother began helping their mother gather mulberries, cherries, and pears from forests to sell to customers on trains that halted at the Khanapur station. Telgi’s mother was a Class 4 railway employee. Telgi enrolled at the Gogate College of Commerce in Belgaum after completing his education, where he eventually earned a commerce degree. 

His first employment was in Mumbai, Maharashtra, with M/s Fillix India Ltd. as a sales professional. Telgi was manager of the Kishan Guest House in Colaba after leaving this position. With lofty aspirations, Telgi made the decision to depart from India. In 1986, he was hired in Saudi Arabia. But after a few years, Telgi job was terminated owing to laziness and he moved back to Mumbai.

In 1986, he was hired in Saudi Arabia. But after a few years, Telgi lost his job owing to laziness and moved back to Mumbai. He began his career in Mumbai as a travel agency and once exported labor to Saudi Arabia. Additionally, he established Arabian Metro Travels at New Marine Lines. Since Telgi quickly started engaging in illegal commercial activities, such as producing fake immigration clearance certificates for laborers looking to go to the Gulf, honesty was clearly not the best approach. 

Abdul Karim Telgi, who went as Karim Lala in his hometown, was initially taken into custody by the Mumbai Police in 1991. He was charged with fabrication and deception under many articles of the Immigration Act. Telgi met Ratan Soni, a stock exchange wheeler-dealer, when he was imprisoned.  They teamed up to take on greater goals.  

According to reports, Soni was the one who informed Telgi that the government’s stamp-paper office was among the least important ones. Eventually, in 1994, Telgi used his political contacts to get a stamp paper license (number 12500) and machinery that the Nashik Security Press deemed to be junk. In spite of accusations and convictions in the years that followed, Telgi went on to become the mastermind behind the multi-million dollar stamp paper hoax.

In 2001, Telgi was taken into custody in Ajmer, Rajasthan. He was convicted of 30 years of hard labor for the fraudulent stamp paper scheme six years later. The purported worth of the scandal was around Rs 20,000 crores.

The Details about the case

SM Krishna was the leader of the Karnataka government, and Veerappan, who was holding Rajkumar captive, was demanding a ransom. But the woodland brigand released the 72-year-old actor without giving a reason after holding him for 108 days.

Rajkumar attributed his liberty to a doctor for alerting his captor about the actor’s diminishing pulse, even if it raised doubts about his release. The government claimed that it did not make any ransom payments. On the other hand, there were rumors claiming that the Tamil Nadu and Karnataka governments paid a covert ransom.

After two years, the director general of police C Dinakar caused controversy when he published a book titled “Veerappan’s Prize catch: Rajkumar.” In it, he claimed that the actor’s release was influenced by VG Siddhartha, the founder of Coffee Day Enterprises and the son-in-law of SM Krishna, who has been reported missing on Monday and later found dead. Siddhartha was a key member of the special task force that was formed to rescue Rajkumar.

According to Dinakar, Siddhartha made arrangements for the forest brigand to receive the ransom. The Frontline reports that Dinakar disclosed in his 318-page book that the SM Krishna administration paid ₹5 crore through Siddhartha in two payments in addition to sending a another ₹10 crore through several other.

Nevertheless, Siddhartha refuted the claim and, in November 2002, brought a defamation lawsuit against Dinakar, which the court rejected for lack of merit. Dinakar had asked the governor for security after the book’s publication because he thought his life and property would be in danger.

It’s interesting to note that the ransom money was purportedly connected to Abdul Karim Telgi’s stamp paper fraud. The money paid as ransom was channeled via Siddhartha, according to former assistant commissioner of police TG Sangram Singh, who was detained by the CBI in connection with the stamp paper fraud, as reported by The Telegraph.

The Conclusion of this Story 

Singh then established connections with Telgi and Siddhartha after claiming to have seen Lala, a prominent Mumbai businessman, in Siddhartha’s home. Singh said that Lala had a connection to the stamp paper fraud.

2004 saw the arrest of Telgi along with seven other people in connection with the multi-crore case of counterfeit stamp paper. He used to produce duplicate stamp sheets in mass in different currencies and provide them to business houses, insurance companies, banks, and stock brokerages. In 2017, Telgi passed away, and last year, a lack of evidence led to the acquittal of others.

Former Karnataka minister for small industries in the SM Krishna administration Roshan Baig had resigned from his position due to claims that he had connections to Telgi.

However, the claimed ransom paid to Veerappan was never officially investigated, and nobody knew where the money had come from. Both the actor and the administration remained silent and let the issue to bed. He is being considered as a nightmare in Indian politics because of his counterfeiting scandal.

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