Ten people, including four lawyers, who allegedly used to steal old stamp papers and later sell it were arrested by the property cell of the Mumbai crime branch. The mastermind behind the scam was 37-year-old Omkareshwar Madhavram Dixit, who was arrested from Uttar Pradesh recently. Dixit, a legal stamp paper vendor and a native of Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh, told police officials that he used to steal old stamp papers dated prior to 2005 from government offices in Uttar Pradesh and used to sell it to one Nilesh after deleting what was written on the stamp papers through a chemical process.
The other arrested accused have been identified as Haridas Ramavtar Prajapati, 30, Vivek Premsagar Pandey and Nagendra Shivpujan Tiwari. The three are advocates by profession at Andheri court. Another arrested advocate was identified as Vimlendra Mataprasad Dwivedi, 44, from Esplanade court. The others arrested are Rajbahadur Parasnath Yadav, 45, who lives in Khar (East), Yelalinga Sarnappa Manglagee alias Nilesh, 30, resident of Ullahasnagar in Thane, Mohammad Yunis Ibrahim Shaikh alias Khan, 48, Sudhirkumar Gaurishankar Barnawal and Ravindra Kumar Omkarnath Tiwari.
Assistant police inspector Nitin Patil who is investigating the case said, “We got a tip-off in October 2015 that fake stamp paper with a past date were being made and sold off at a higher price than the actual amount”. Incidentally, the stamp paper of Rs10 and 20 were being brought from Beed and Bhandara in Maharashtra since these stamp papers were not available in Mumbai and were sold illegally at a much higher price, said Patil. There were some advocates and those working in notary department in Andheri, Bandra and Esplanade court who would work in tandem to sell these stamp papers. “When we verified in head office of the stamp papers at Fort, we found that they did not have any official records,” added Patil.
During investigation, the police laid a trap at Bandra court and arrested two people, Rajbahadur Yadav and Nilesh and recovered fake stamp papers of 2004. The case was registered in Nirmal Nagar police station. Meanwhile officials laid another trap at Esplanade court arresting Dwivedi and a third one at Andheri court where three advocates Prajapati, Pandey and Nagendra Tiwari were arrested. The police recovered fake stamp paper from them too.
Nilesh was in contact with all the accused and used to buy stamp paper from Dixit in Uttar Pradesh at a cost of Rs100 for each stamp paper and used to sell it for as much as Rs3,000 to other advocates and those working with the notary department. “Dixit came in contact with Nilesh through an advocate who is wanted in the case. There are several other people involved in the scam and we have been looking for them. The investigation is going on” said Patil.