Former film distributor alleges builder threatened and abused him to vacate Virar flat

May 07, 2018, 17:00 IST | Samiullah Khan and Hajra Bi

Trouble began in January 2013, when he decided to move from Andheri to Virar

Santosh Kumar Shah
Santosh Kumar Shah

Virar resident and former film distributor Santosh Kumar Shah, 48, has lived through what can only be described as a tragic Bollywood plot, thanks to a landlord and policeman from hell.

Trouble began in January 2013, when he decided to move from Andheri to Virar. Shah had been a distributor for films such as Mahasangram (1990) and Insaaf (1997). He got a 1BHK apartment on a rent of Rs 2,700 and Rs 15,000 deposit, owned by one Ravikant Patil in Virar East.

No amenities
Shah was assured of every possible amenity in the house. But when he moved in, he found out that there was neither electricity nor any water supply. Shah said he complained to Patil about this and was assured it would be sorted out in a few days, but that never happened. He realised Patil had cheated others in the same flat, so he registered a complaint at the Virar police station. Patil was served a notice under Section 149 of the CrPC.

Soon after, Shah alleges Patil verbally threatened and abused him, asking him to withdraw the complaint and vacate the house. Patil then came to the flat with a woman and builder Bhushan Patil. Shah called the cops and went to the police station, when he saw Patil and the builder there. Shah said he was slapped by PSI Asif Baig. Shah's case was transferred to API DF Patil, following a robbery attempt in his flat.

PSI denies allegations
Baig denied all the charges. In fact, he said he would receive complaints against Shah from other society members, as he never paid his utility bills on time, resulting in the disconnection of his electricity and water. He would also call senior officers now and then for every problem.

Meanwhile, Shah alleged that in June 2014, he was assaulted by the accused and some more people. He called the cops, but nobody turned up. Shah attempted to meet Thane SP Rajesh Pradhan, but fainted before he could do so. The SP ordered his team to take Shah to the hospital and file an FIR against the accused.

Framed and locked up
When Shah came back to the police station to register the plaint, the cops ended up arresting him under charges of molestation and the POCSO Act. He ended up spending 20 months in prison for a crime he didn't commit. A court acquitted him and he was released on January 13, 2016. All cases against him were dropped in June 2017.

Shah then went back to the flat to collect his belongings but found nothing there. To his surprise, another tenant was residing there. His car was also missing.

Currently, Shah has no job and little money. He eats food at religious shrines and sleeps at railway stations. Last month, he approached current Thane SP Manjunath Shinde, who has asked Virar police to look into the matter. Palghar district PRO said, "We have received an application from Shah and ordered Virar police to investigate."

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