Navi Mumbai: Priest held for duping people on pretext of ‘gold puja’

Prime News, Nation, (Mumbai), January 23:-A 35-year-old priest has been arrested in Navi Mumbai for duping people on the pretext of performing puja of their gold jewellery to ward off evil spirits, police said on Wednesday.

The accused, Ajay Jangam, was arrested last week by the Navi Mumbai police’s Crime Branch, they said.

Police seized around 954 grams of gold worth Rs 36.10 lakh from him, they said.

The case came to light after a person approached Jangam to get rid of problems in his life, the police said.

The priest asked him to hand over his gold jewellery on which he will perform puja to ward off evil spirits responsible for his woes, they said.

However, Jangam disappeared after taking possession of gold jewellery, the police said.

The victim approached the police which launched a search for the accused.

“After a case was registered against Jangam on January 11, we launched a search operation, but since he did not use a mobile phone, it was difficult to track him, said a Crime Branch official.

However, the police received a tip-off about his presence in Sanpada, Navi Mumbai, from where he was arrested, he said.

During interrogation, he confessed cheating many people using the same modus operandi and swindling gold worth Rs 36.10 lakh from them.

“We suspect he had duped many people using the same technique and we are in the process of identifying the other victims, added the officer.

Jangam has been booked under IPC sections related to cheating and criminal breach of trust, the police added.

-(NAV, Inputs: Agencies)

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