After waiting for several months following her husband's death, Neha Tahiliani realised the Rs 12 lakh had been withdrawn by crooks using fake identity; four arrested
For more than three months, a Dahisar-based widow waited for her late husband's life insurance money, before she learnt that the cheque of Rs 12 lakh had been encashed in her name and she had been duped. Dahisar police have arrested four people including a clerk at Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) for the scam. One accused remains absconding.
The crooks: (Clockwise) Yasmin Khan, Kaustubh Das, Om Shrivastav and Sudhir Ghadi
According to the cops, the woman Neha Tahiliani, whose husband Harish had died in September 2011, had claimed his life insurance money from LIC.
On October 21, 2011 the company had released the cheque in Neha's name. A few days later Neha received a receipt by post at her house stating that the cheque had been delivered to her.
Neha approached the local LIC office to complain that she in fact had not received the cheque.
When LIC officers checked their computers, they learnt that the cheque had been dispatched in Neha's name and the money had also been withdrawn at the Central Bank of India in Dahisar (East).
LIC then approached the Dahisar police station and registered a complaint.
"I was astonished on getting the receipt, because I hadn't received any cheque. I then approached the local LIC office and the representatives there told me that the money had already been withdrawn from my Central Bank of India account. I told them that I had no account with the bank.
I then went to file a complaint at the Santacruz police station, who asked me to approach the Dahisar police as the particular bank branch falls under their jurisdiction. Finally, LIC lodged a complaint at Dahisar police station. Though my husband's death cannot be compensated for, I now hope to receive the money as soon as possible, so that I can move on with my life," Neha told MiD DAY.
Phoney connection Dahisar police officers investigating the case said that when they inquired at the bank, they found that an account in the name of Neha Tahiliani had been created through which the money had been withdrawn.
On further investigation, police officers found that the cheque had been issued on the submission of photocopies of PAN card and ration card. The photo on the PAN card however did not match Neha's.
The police then alerted their informers through whom they found that the woman, whose photo had been used, stayed at Mira Road.
The police detained the woman, identified as Yasmin Khan (24), who told the cops that she had been approached by two men Kaustubh Das (28) and Om Shrivastav (29), who forged her documents and asked her to withdraw the money for them.
"We later found that the two cheats had been arrested by the Gujarat police for creating bogus documents and withdrawing another LIC cheque," said API Pravin Rane from Dahisar police station.
In the net On January 14, Dahisar police arrested Kaustubh and Om through whom they learnt that a clerk working at LIC, identified as Sudhir Ghadi, had stolen the cheque and given it to the duo.
The police officers said that the cheats had an arrangement with Ghadi who used to supply them with stolen LIC cheques. Then by creating a fake account in the name of the recipient, using details of an associate, the crooks would claim the cheque and withdraw the insurance amount. Kaustubh, Om, Sudhir and Yasmin are now in police custody, while an aide of Sudhir who delivered the cheques to the cheats is still at large.
She'll get the money: LIC Sanjay Satam, manager of LIC's Santacruz branch said, "The victim had come to us for the insurance amount. We told her that her money had already been claimed and transferred to her Central Bank account. She however denied having received the money, as she had no account in Central Bank. She went to Santacruz police station to register her complaint who in turn diverted her to Dahisar from where the cash was withdrawn. Neha Tahiliani will receive the full amount in a few days."