Police on Sunday arrested a functionary of Pattali Makkal Katchi’s women’s wing for swindling lakhs of rupees from would-be advocates, selling them fake law degrees they claimed universities in the northern states had issued.
Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry secretary V Dakshinamoorthy lodged a police complaint in which he stated that Arun Kumar, 36, had submitted to the council a fake LLB certificate from Bundelkhand University, Uttar Pradesh.
When police questioned Arun Kumar, he revealed that he got the certificate by paying 3.5 lakh to K Shanmugasundari, whom he learned about from a newspaper advertisement for degree certificates at nominal charges.
Investigations revealed that Shanmugasundari was vice-president of PMK women’s wing. She operated from Coimbatore and was the kingpin of the racket.
Shanmugasundari enrolled as an advocate with a fake law degree a year ago. After she cheated the officials and registered as an advocate, she quickly earned political mileage and set up an office in Alandur and 14 others across the state.
“Shanmugasundari and her accomplices issued a bogus law certificate within three months for 3.5 lakh,” an investigating officer said.
They also issued fake engineering degrees, charging between 4 lakh and 5 lakh each, he said. Shanmugasundari made business cards that described her as chairperson of ‘Hi-Mark Educational Institution’ in Gandhipuram, Coimbatore.