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Antim Totla denies links with Telgi
November 16, 2003 21:49 IST
Mumbai-based businessman Antim Totla on Sunday denied any links with Abdul Karim Telgi, the main accused in the multi-crore fake stamps and stamp paper scam.
Leader of the Opposition Narayan Rane had recently alleged that Totla had played host to ruling Democratic Front legislators in Bangalore last year when the government faced the threat of defections.
Totla was also in the limelight recently for his alleged proximity with Sameer Bhujbal, nephew of Chhagan Bhujbal, and their alleged business relationship.
Reacting to media reports, Totla, in a statement issued in Mumbai, denied paying Rs 20 crore as bribe to a senior minister of the Democratic Front government on Telgi's behalf.
According to Totla, his family belongs to Jalgaon and had been dealing with petroleum products for over 40 years.
Although he admitted knowing politicians like Deputy Chief Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, Rane and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Gopinath Munde and having participated in many of their functions, he claimed he "never took undue benefit" of this acquaintance.
Totla also denied fleeing the country after the allegations of bribery involving him cropped up. "I had gone abroad on a pre-planned business tour and returned on November 15," he said.