Police nail Atul Rao for cheating, forgery

Police nail Atul Rao for cheating, forgery

 The Corps of Detectives (rechristened CID) in its chargesheet filed before the Udupi Judicial Magistrate, First Class, has found prima facie evidence of cheating and forgery against Atul Rao, the contractor, in the sensational Padmapriya case. The CoD has not, however, found any evidence so far of abetment to suicide.

Padmapriya took her own life in a New Delhi apartment on June 15, 2008. The Department of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology, Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi had conducted the post-mortem. Rao was arrested, but later released on bail.

Subsequently, the police filed a chargesheet on June 22, 2008. A supplementary chargesheet was prepared and submitted before the trial court in Udupi on April 24, this year. According to the chargesheet, Rao was found to have committed cognizable offences under IPC Sections 417, 465, 468 (forgery for purposes of harming reputation) and 471 (using as genuine a forged document). Deccan Herald is in possession of copies of the two chargesheets as well as the post-mortem report.

With the submission of the supplementary chargesheet, sources in the CID say it has completed investigation into the case. It is awaiting the conclusive forensics report from Delhi. “About 99 per cent of the investigation in to the case has been completed. Once the forensics report is submitted, the trial will begin,” sources said.

Padmapriya’s death caused a lot of embarrassment to the ruling BJP. Atul, a family friend of Raghupati, allegedly helped Padmapriya reach and settle in Delhi. The MLA had lodged a complaint, alleging that Atul had a hand in his wife’s disappearance. Atul is now on bail.

The chargesheet says that Padmapriya decided to leave her husband’s house and lead a separate life in Delhi. Atul made sufficient arrangements for her stay there, from February 28, 2008. He took away his wife Meera’s driving licence and created a duplicate card by using Padmapriya’s photo in place of Meera. The document was faked/forged to execute his future plans, the police report said.

It further stated that in May 2008, Rao furnished incorrect personal details to conceal his identity while drawing the apartment rent agreement. He also used the same forged document to open an account with State Bank of Indore. Besides, he indicated his wife’s name as Priyanka.

Atul purchased a flight ticket to Delhi in his wife Meera's name.

It was used by Padmapriya to travel to Delhi. In Udupi, he created faked scenes to give an impression that Padmapriya was abducted from her car while she was travelling with him to Goa via Uttara Kannada. To have an alibi, he sent his car with one Upendra to Bangalore to suggest he was staying at Hotel Swati in Seshadripura, Bangalore.

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