Who is Abdul Karim Telgi: The Core of SonyLIV’s ‘Scam 2003’ – The Telgi Story

Abdul Karim Telgi, the mastermind behind India’s infamous counterfeiting scandal, built a counterfeit empire worth ₹30,000 crore before being sentenced to 30 years in prison in 2006.

Who is Abdul Karim Telgi: The Core of SonyLIV's 'Scam 2003' - The Telgi Story

Scam 2003 – The Telgi Story was released on September 1. Hansal Mehta, the person who made the hit web series Scam 1992, is in charge of the second part of the Scam series. This new web series is based on a book called “Telgi Scam: Reporter’s ki Diary” by Sanjay Singh and you can watch it on SonyLIV. Now, let’s learn about Abdul Karim Telgi, the person this story is all about.

Telgi, a name that’s infamous in India, was the mastermind behind one of the nation’s most notorious counterfeit scandals. Born in 1961, Telgi’s life was a mix of ambition, cleverness, and crime, resulting in a counterfeit empire that greatly affected the country’s financial institutions.

Starting from Scratch

Telgi’s early life was filled with challenges. His father, who worked for the Indian Railways, passed away when Telgi was just a kid. To pay for his school, Telgi sold fruits and veggies on trains. After some years, he went to Saudi Arabia, and seven years later, he came back to India with a completely different job in mind—making fake money.

Dealing in Fake Documents: The Telgi Saga

In the beginning, Telgi was all about making fake passports. He even set up a company called Arabian Metro Travels, but not for what it seemed. This company wasn’t about travel; it was about making fake documents so that people going to Saudi Arabia for work could avoid those tough checks at the border. In the industry, this trick is known as “pushing.

Telgi, though, quickly switched his attention to a much more profitable business – making fake stamp paper. He hired 300 people to help him sell these bogus documents to big buyers like banks, insurance firms, and stock brokers. The size of this operation was massive, estimated to be around ₹30,000 crore.

The law finally caught up with him

The scandal was so big that it got some police officers and government workers involved. They put Telgi in jail for 30 years in 2006. Then, in 2007, they gave him another 13 years in prison. They also told him he had to pay a fine of ₹202 crore.

Personal life and demise

Telgi was famous for his extravagant way of life, which included frequently going to dance bars. There were even rumors that he was in love with a dancer named Tarannumn Khan. As per reports, he once spent a whopping ₹90 lakh on a single night at the bar to pamper this dancer.

His life abruptly ended in 2017 because of meningitis, made worse by long-lasting health problems like diabetes and high blood pressure.

In the end, Abdul Karim Telgi was a complicated person. He started from very little and managed to build a significant business, even though it was built on questionable moral grounds.

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