In order to build a watertight case against Mephedrone’s (MD) biggest dealer in Maharashtra, Shashikala alias Baby Patankar, 54, the police have dug deep into her finances. The investigators say they have found transactions worth around Rs 5 crore made from her 22 bank accounts in the past few years, many of which have been frozen.
Patankar was arrested by the city police on Wednesday in connection with the seizure of 12 kg of Mephedrone (MD) worth around Rs 2.5 crore from the locker of her boyfriend, police constable Dharmraj Kalokhe, at the Marine Drive police station on March 10.
Kalokhe and Patankar’s son, Satish, has also been arrested in the case. Kalokhe was arrested by the Satara police after 112 kg of MD was found in his friend's residence on March 9.
Police sources said Patankar and her relatives have bank accounts in Worli, Prabhadevi and Dadar. “Patankar has 22 bank accounts. She has deposited Rs 1.45crore for a fix deposit (FD) in an account in a nationalised bank’s Khodadad circle branch. She took a loan of Rs 1.25 crore (of which Rs 13 lakh has been repaid) on this FD. It has yet to be established exactly where she diverted this money,” said a police officer.
Patankar has a current account in the name of Saurav Tours and Travels as its proprietor. Around Rs 37 lakh from this account was seized by the Worli police in December 30, 2014, after her daughter-in-law, Sarika, and her nephew were arrested with 24 gm of MD. Patankar was wanted in that case.
A crime branch officer said, “Under the NDPS Act, in cases where commercial quantity of drug is seized, the investigating officer has the power to carry out financial investigations and MD’s commercial quantity is just 50 gm. It is clear that the money found in her accounts was earned from drugs as making such profits from a business of renting out four-wheelers is not possible.”
“Patankar will not be in the position to explain the transactions worth crores and the detailed financial investigation will make it difficult for her to secure bail,” the officer said. He added that it is likely Patankar has more bank accounts.