Six people were arrested for allegedly duping 170 people out of Rs 2.5 crore by issuing fake allotment certificates for 2BHK apartments in Telangana since last year. The fraud was detected within the state governmentâ€™s flagship scheme providing housing for those below the poverty line.
Busaraju Lalitha was promised a 2BHK and was allegedly cheated of Rs 1.6 lakh. The woman then filed a complaint with the Dundigal police station within the Cyberabad police limits in Hyderabad on 28 December 2019.
On February 8, police arrested VV Sathya Krishna Vara Prasad, a 43-year-old businessman and Aduri Murali Krishna Murthy, 72, who is an astrologer, both of whom have been named as main accused in the case. A walder named P Srinivasa Rao, 45, Aela Laxmi, 46, who runs a tiffin center, N Krishna Rao, 37, and K Srinivas, 53, both private employees, were also arrested in connection to the case. The four would allegedly help Prasad and Murthy defraud people of their money for a commission.
Police said Prasad was drinking at a wine shop when he came across two men discussing the fake allotment letters of 2BHK homes. He then asked the two men to give him a photocopy of the fake document and with the help of Venkat, a resident of Bowrampet, he learnt how to forge the document.
Prasad then allegedly convinced his relative, Aduri Murali Krishna Murthy, claiming that he had good relations in the secretariat and that it will be easy for him to get allotment letters.
Murthy went on to issue as many as 169 applications for 2BHK homes and collected over Rs 1 crore for himself. "He spent the money on a lavish lifestyle and even built a house," said Cyberabad police commissioner VC Sajjanar speaking to the media about the case.
The main accused went on to recruit more people into their scam, and duped more applicants until they had collected around Rs. 2.5 crore in total, which was shared within the group.
Murthy also allegedly employed Aela Laxmi by giving her a commission. Laxmi showed the fake double bedroom allotment letter to all her customers and those known to her. "She gained peopleâ€™s trust and collected Rs 1,50,000 from each customer. She took a commission and then gave the remaining amount to Srinivas Rao and he took a cut and gave the remaining amount to Murthy and Prasad. Both men are relatives. The fake allotment documents issued by them look genuine to the layman," said the commissioner.
The accused allegedly used the money to buy gold ornaments, a gold necklace, a Maruthi car, and a Honda City car. All these have been confiscated.
Police also recovered a total of Rs 1,11,84,000 core that was unspent from all the six accused. The police also confiscated six mobile phones, an HP laptop, a printer. The police have also recovered fake allotment letters worth Rs 1,21,34,000 from the accused.