A man cheated two people of Rs 30 lakh on the pretext of selling them flats built by the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (Mhada) at half the market rate. The Kalachowki police are investigating the case. The accused had also given bogus Mhada receipts to the complainants, the police said.
The complainant, Anil Mhaske (name changed), who is a resident of Ghodapdeo area, met a man named Kamran Shaikh through a common friend in December last year. Shaikh posed as a Mhada officer and told Mhaske he could get him or his relatives cheap Mhada flats that were sold to mill workers, and were being resold by them.
Shaikh, who would often come in a car to meet Mhaske, offered him a flat for just Rs 20 lakh. Mhaske was convinced with Shaikh’s promise and expressed interest. Shaikh told Mhaske he had to make some advance payment to start the procedure, the police said.
On Shaikh’s instructions, Mhaske gave him a total of Rs 15 lakh for pre-allotment works. “Mhaske made cash payments to Shaikh opposite a hotel in Cotton Green and was given receipts from Mhada every time. Since Mhaske was getting Mhada receipts he did not suspect any foul play,” said an officer from the Kalachowki police station.
Mhaske was promised he would get the flat’s keys in March. When he didn’t, he visited Mhada’s head office in Bandra (East). On inquiring there about Shaikh and the receipts he had received, he was informed that no such officer works in Mhada, and that the receipts were forged ones.
Mhaske subsequently came across a woman from his locality who told him that she too had been cheated of Shaikh of Rs 15 lakh in exactly the same manner. Both then approached the Kalachowki police station and registered a case.
“We have registered a case of cheating and forgery and are probing the case. If more people have been cheated similarly, they should approach us,” said senior inspector Shekhar Tavde of the Kalachowki police station.