The case came to light when an anti-terrorist cell officer attached to the Chembur police, visited a mobile shop in Nehru Nagar as part of his routine duty to collect documents submitted for new mobile connections.
A racket involving manufacture and distribution of bogus government documents such as Aadhaar and ration cards was busted by the Chembur police on Sunday.
The mastermind of the racket, a 44-year-old paan vendor, Ramashray Indrajit Yadav, was picked up by the police after investigators received a tip-off.
The officers then arrested two more persons, including the manager of an Aadhaar centre in Govandi, for allegedly conniving with the paan shop owner and approving fake documents and issuing Aadhaar cards.
The case came to light when Prakash Kalange, an anti-terrorist cell officer attached to the Chembur police, visited a mobile shop in Nehru Nagar as part of his routine duty to collect documents submitted for new mobile connections.
There, he found two documents to be suspicious.
“One of the documents belonged to a salon shop owner who had submitted his Aadhaar card for the connection. This card had the hair cutting salon’s address as residential proof but he did not own this. He told us later that he had paid Rs 100 to the paanwala to get the Aadhaar Card made,” said a police officer who is part of the probe.
Apart from Yadav, police have arrested Diptesh Dashrath Salunkhe (25) and Shantaram Yashwant Chavan (38).
A probe revealed that Yadav — based out of a paan shop on S G Barve Marg in Nehru Nagar — would allegedly make Aadhaar cards for people who did not have valid identification and residential documents for anything between Rs 300 and Rs 500.