In the first volume of Tushar Hiranandani’s Scam 2003, we got privy to how a bright and astute man, who was a victim of his own circumstances, got an opportunity, and he latched onto it so hard that very soon his life became a topic of discussion for the entire country. The first volume of the SonyLIV series left us on a cliffhanger, where Telgi found out about the blunder he had committed, and we could clearly see a little bit of regret and frustration on his face when he stood there in his lavish hotel room taking calls from everybody who was associated with him. He could say that he was under the influence of alcohol, but no excuse was going to work now as the politicians and the various pawns who were a part of the system he had developed over the years had gotten a whiff of the blood. They were predators, and they were not going to stop until he quenched their thirst.
One can plead that the economic disparity hadn’t left Telgi with much of an option, but then there were others like him who faced the same struggle but never opted for illegitimate means to make money. Abdul Karim Telgi’s greed became his biggest foe, and had he been able to keep it under check, things probably would have turned out a little differently for him. He said he was doing it for his own family, but that was a complete lie. Neither his wife, Nafisa, nor his mother ever desired anything more than they had. It was Telgi who always felt claustrophobic and wanted to break the shackles and live a life of privilege. We don’t deny that in a capitalist society, it takes a miracle to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor, but then again, resorting to illegitimate activities is no solution to it. The moment Abdul stepped into Mumbai, he could smell that it was the land of opportunities and that there was a lot of money to be made, provided the person was willing to give what it took.
More than anybody else, Abdul disappointed his own family through his actions. Nafisa was a simple woman who didn’t crave or desire anything else apart from her husband’s time. Though Abdul didn’t ill-treat her, the consequences of his profession hurt them beyond any measure. We liked Abdul at the beginning of the series, as we saw that even though he was indulging in all sorts of illegal activities, he had a few principles and ethics that he abided by and that were non-compromisable. Slowly, as money started showing its color, Abdul also changed. He was never that arrogant man who would throw 90 lakh just because he wanted to prove a point; in fact, he was the kind of man who would stop others from acting recklessly. He always thought with a cool mind, but of late, the power and status that money had bought him had started to make him feel infallible. That’s how treacherous the greed for more could be.
It changes a person from within, as we clearly saw with Abdul. Not even once did he think about his wife before making a mockery of himself at that bar. There was a time when Jhaveri had to literally force him to enter there, and even then, all he could think of was how to expand his business. People will say that back then, too, he was doing all sorts of illegal stuff, but still, there was a bleak chance that in the future, he might come back to the right path. But this version of Abdul was full of himself, and he had lost that genuineness because of which Nafisa had fallen for him in the first place.
Now, as for Scam 2003: The Telgi Story volume 2, we already know that Abdul Karim Telgi was sentenced to 30 years of rigorous imprisonment, and later, an additional 12 years were added to it, and that eventually, in 2017, he died due to the various illnesses that he was suffering from. But what would be intriguing is how he tackles the situation, what desperate attempts he makes to come out on the other side, how he handles his own emotions, what efforts he takes to not let his family fall apart, and most of all, how he reacts when he is standing in the face of defeat. Obviously, there would be a lot of creative liberties taken by the makers to dramatize the narrative and elevate the entertainment quotient of the series, though they would make sure to keep the sanctity of the real story intact.
Telgi will now know who his loyal soldiers are. He was already in a very insecure state of mind when he found that one of his associates was embezzling funds and stealing from him. It is the beginning of the downfall of an adventurous and dangerous journey, and probably Telgi cannot see it right now, but he would definitely realize it in Scam 2003: The Telgi Story Volume 2. Telgi always went about his business unabashedly, and we would get to see if he remained like that even when the entire world seemed to be conspiring against him or he changed his tactics and became docile.
We believe that Telgi would realize at some point in volume 2 that he had gone overboard with a lot of things. There was too much risk involved in the entire plan where he wanted to shut down the Nasik security press and start his own thing. It was sheer greed, as nothing else could reasonably justify that plan of his. He was already making enough to just throw away 90 lakhs for the sake of his ego, and we didn’t understand why he needed to go a step further and come to the attention of the ministers sitting in Delhi. Operating under the radar was his strength, but now, in volume 2, when his camouflage is removed, he would find it very difficult to go about his business like he used to earlier. We would witness Abdul Telgi slowly walking towards his own doom in Scam 2003: The Telgi Story volume 2, and no matter what trick he employed, he wouldn’t be able to withstand the storm that was coming his way with full force.