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Dharmasala foreign currency haul: Couple arrested

Last Updated: Thursday, February 3, 2011 - 22:07

Dharamsala/Shimla: A couple was on Thursday nabbed in
connection with the seizure of huge foreign currency from the
transit home of Karmapa Ugyen Trinley Dorje, raising the
number of those arrested in the case to seven even as Chief
Minister P K Dhumal hinted at probing benami land deals.

Karma Thapa and his wife Rinzin was charged with
arranging the Rs 1 crore seized from Sanjay and Asutosh at Una
border on January 25.
The couple was picked up from Majnoo-Ka-Tila in Delhi
and was being quizzed for the past three days, police said,
adding they were formally arrested today.

The money was allegedly being brought to Dharamsala
for purchase of land for monastery and the arrest was made
after the couple failed to disclose a valid source of this

The seizure of Rs 1 crore had led to series of raids
at the premises of the trust backed by Karmapa at Gyuto
Monastery at Sidhbari and foreign currency worth Rs 7.5 crore
was recovered.

A close aide of Karmapa, Shakti Lama was also arrested
in connection with the currency and later two more persons,
Dharamsala-based hotelier K P Bharadwaj and manager of Ambala
branch of Corporation Bank D K Dhar were arrested on January

With the arrest of the Thapa couple, the total number
of arrests in foreign currency case has risen to seven.

Meanwhile, a delegation of Tibetan leaders consisting
of `speaker` and `deputy speaker` of its `parliament-in-exile`
Penpa Tshering and Dolma Gyari, spokesperson Karma Topden and
others met Dhumal.
Dhumal reportedly disapproved of the candle marches
and processions being taken out by Tibetans and told them that
these were unwarranted as investigations were already

He also hinted that all benami land deals would be
investigated and action would be taken against those,
facilitating these illegal deals.

Dhumal`s comments are significant as the investigation
agencies have recovered documents about land deals and power
of attorney.

There were allegations that Tibetans had acquired
benami lands in the name of local people and prices of these
lands were so high that it was unlikely that the people on
whose names lands had been registered could have arrange such

DGP D S Minhas had also mentioned about some deals
which were suspected to be benami and under investigation.
Meanwhile, Tibetan leaders said yesterday`s march was
not in protest against anyone but simply meant to express
solidarity with the Karmapa whom they respected and hold in
high esteem.


First Published: Thursday, February 3, 2011 - 22:07

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