UNIDENTIFIED FRAUDSTERS used two cloned cheques to withdraw Rs 6 lakh from the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust’s bank account, meant for collection of funds for the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya, police said on Thursday. The fraud came to light when a third cheque of Rs 9.86 lakh was placed for clearance on Wednesday, after which a verification call was made to the Trust General Secretary Champat Rai asking if anyone in the Trust was making a withdrawal. An FIR was then registered at the Ayodhya Kotwali police station in Ayodhya.
According to the FIR registered on the basis of Rai’s complaint, around 11:40 am on Wednesday, he received a call from Lucknow asking if he has made a payment of Rs 9.86 lakh from cheque number 740798, and when confirmed it was found that the given cheque number was already there in the cheque book.
“Later, we came to know that Rs 2.50 lakh were transferred to an account from the Trust’s account using cheque number 740799 on September 1. On September 8, cheque number 740800 was used to transfer Rs 3.50 lakh. All the given cheque numbers are already there in the cheque book, meaning that unidentified persons have taken a total Rs 6 lakh using two fake cheques and fake signatures to their account,” said Rai in the FIR.
The complaint also said a payment account of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust is at the Nayaghaat branch of the State Bank of India, and the cheques for the account need the signatures of Champat Rai and Trust member Anil Mishra. The FIR was registered under sections 471 (using as genuine a forged), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 467 (forgery of valuable security, will, etc), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) and 419 (cheating by personation) of the IPC.
Ayodhya Circle Officer (CO) Amar Singh said the investigation so far has revealed that the cheques were placed for clearance in Mumbai and thus, UP police teams may be sent to Mumbai for investigation. “The number mentioned in the FIR from which the complainant got the call if of Lucknow, however we have found that the accused had gone to Mumbai banks to submit the forged cheques. The first two checks were placed in branches of two banks in Lucknow. As the cheque had a much bigger amount this time, a verification call was made,” said the CO.
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