THE ECONOMIC Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police will seek custody of Shekhar Chandrashekhar alias Sukesh Chandrashekhar in order to produce him before the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors (MPIDA) Act court in connection with a Rs 19-crore cheating case. Chandrashekhar (27) allegedly acted as the middleman for AIADMK leader T T V Dinakaran, who reportedly tried to bribe an Election Commission official to obtain the party’s two-leaves poll symbol for the Sasikala faction. Chandrashekhar was arrested in Delhi on Monday.
According to the Mumbai Police EOW case, in 2015, Chandrashekhar and his alleged girlfriend, Leena Maria Paul, a South Indian actress, floated a bogus company by the name ‘Lion Oak Indian’ and launched various investment schemes of different durations with an assurance of 20 per cent return per month, apart from other benefits like rewards of Tata Nano car, gold coins etc. Through his ponzi scheme, he had amassed Rs 19 crore.
“We had information that he was operating from a rented apartment in Goregoan in western suburban Mumbai. Based on the information, his office and residence were raided in May 2015. During the raids, a lot of investment documents had been seized. Besides, nine high-end cars, expensive sunglasses, watches and other expensive items were also seized. He was arrested along with Paul and subsequently, we arrested four more accomplices in the case. The chargesheet was filed in July 2015,” said a senior EOW official.
Chandrashekhar was granted bail by the Supreme Court in March 2016 on an undertaking of depositing Rs 19.50 crore within three months from the date of his release. However, he failed and, consequently, his bail was cancelled in January this year.
“We will, therefore, stake claim to his custody after the Delhi Police completes its investigation so as to produce him before the MPID court as he had jumped bail,” added the official.
According to the police, Chandrashekhar is wanted in 20 criminal cases of cheating registered against him in Chennai, Bengaluru, Delhi and Mumbai. All these cases involve different modus operandi. “Chandrashekhar is a trickster and used different modus operandi while fleecing investors,” the official added.
Other than the ponzi scheme, the Mumbai Police had also booked him in a case of impersonation where Chandrashekhar had posed as a person attached with the Ministry of Law and Justice and threatened a receiver from the Bombay High Court to stall the proceedings against an arrested businessman, Navinchandra Hegde.
In July last year, the Mumbai Police arrested a top medical officer of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), Chief Medical Superintendent Dr Mahendra Wadiwala, who was in charge of 18 peripheral hospitals of the civic body.
Dr Wadiwala’s name surfaced during the interrogation of Hegde, arrested earlier that month after a receiver from the Bombay High Court lodged a complaint with the Azad Maidan police station, claiming that he received a call from a person claiming to be attached to the Ministry of Law and Justice who threatened him to stall the proceedings against Hegde.
The source claimed that Dr Wadiwala had asked Chandrashekhar to impersonate an official from the ministry and phone the receiver. Dr Wadiwala allegedly obliged Chandrashekhar by extending his hospital stay up to four months at the civic-run Rajawadi Hospital.
Chandrashekhar’s discharge date at Rajawadi Hospital was repeatedly extended due to alleged backache, chest pain and giddiness.
While he was initially taken to JJ Hospital for check-up, he was later taken to Rajawadi and admitted there for chest pain on April 23.
He was finally taken back to Arthur Road Jail after complaints from the hospital administration about his forced hospitalisation.