NEW DELHI: A 42-year-old woman has been awarded three year imprisonment by a Delhi court for misappropriating cheques of a leading travel company she was working in and forging them to purchase jewellery worth over Rs 17 lakh 20 years ago.
Metropolitan Magistrate sentenced Delhi resident Indu Verma and also directed her to pay a compensation of Rs 20 lakh within three months to aggrieved party Thomas Cook India Pvt Ltd.
The court held her guilty of offences under sections 419 (cheating by impersonation), 403 (misappropriation of property), 467(forgery), 468(forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged) and 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the IPC.
"This court has convicted Indu Verma on six different counts and all of which are in the nature of serious offences.
The convict has misappropriated the cheques belonging to her employer (Thomas Cook India) and to have purchased jewellery worth approximately Rs 17.50 lakh by forging the said cheques.
"Unfortunately, nothing could be recovered during investigation. It is apparent that the convict has not only acted against the interests of an employer but has also caused loss/injury to her employer to the tune of Rs 17.50 lakh," the magistrate said.
The court said the conduct of the woman does not deserve any leniency and taking a lenient view would send a wrong message to the society that any person could get away easily on the ground that he has suffered a protracted trial.
It, however, allowed her plea to suspend her sentence for a month to enable her to file an appeal against the judgement.
According to the prosecution, Verma had impersonated as a fictitious person, Shivani Arora, and purchased jewellery from M/s Ram Gopal and Sons in September and October, 1996 by using forged cheques of Thomas Cook (India) Ltd.
An FIR was registered against her and she was arrested initially but granted bail later.
During the trial, the woman denied all the evidence adduced by the prosecution against her.
Verma sought leniency in sentence on the ground that she was married and had stayed in custody for about a week. She also said there was no previous criminal record and claimed she was suffering from depression.