Panvel police has registered a case against 10 people, including a property dealer, for fraudulently selling the same piece of land parcel to at least two people. The land, in Kongaon area, belonged to two sisters, who were reportedly paid a measly sum of Rs 70,000 by the accused, police said.
The sisters, Shankutala Mhatre and Kusum Mali, police said, had received an acre of farmland as part of their paternal property at Wardoli area in 2000. “Mhatre’s husband had contacted an agent, Ravindra Rane, to sell the land. As per the complaint, Rane took all the papers related to the land and even Shakuntala’s and Kusum’s thumbprints on a paper. In return, he gave them Rs 54,000-worth cheque, which reportedly bounced. When Mhatre tried to contact Rane, he reportedly kept giving them vague answers and refused to meet,” a police officer said.
In 2013, Rane met the sisters again and gave them Rs 70,000 as a ‘token’ amount, claiming that the last deal had fallen through and that he was facilitating a new deal, police said. “The women again gave their thumbprints and other documents to Rane, who reportedly never reverted to them on the matter,” the officer said.
Later, Shakuntala’s son Kishor submitted several applications to the Talathi office to find that the land belonged to Valuable Industries Private Limited in the official records, police said. “Upon further investigation, Kishor found that a fake power of attorney had been made on Rane’s name using the thumbprints the sisters had given him,” the officer said.
Panvel police Tuesday lodged an FIR against Rane and 10 others, including some government officials who had allegedly helped him obtain the fake power of attorney. “He sold the same parcel of land to at least two different parties. However, it is not clear who is the second buyer. We are trying to trace Rane as only then we will be able to ascertain how many people was the land sold to,” he said.