Four nabbed for running fake visa racket

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

NEW DELHI - A 40-year-old man, after suffering huge losses in the stock market, hit upon a novel way to dupe people. He would send random SMSes to mobile users in Punjab saying their Canadian visa had been approved. Those who fell for it would be made to cough up Rs.8 lakh — and after that the conman and his aides would disappear.

Delhi Police Crime Branch sleuths apprehended Harvinder Singh, 40, and his three associates in the capital, police said Tuesday. The other three have been identified as Pawan Kumar, 40, Harish Kumar, 41, and Anil Arora, 57.

The racket came to light after Mandeep Singh, a resident of Jalandhar in Punjab, made a complaint Feb 4 saying that he had struck a deal of Rs.8 lakh with R.K. Sethi, whose real name he came to know later as Harvinder Singh, for a Canadian Work Visa.

In the complaint, he stated that he had already paid Rs.60,000 and had given his passport for visa and the remaining Rs.740,000 was supposed to be paid after he got the visa. However, Harvinder Singh was delaying delivery of his passport, and on insistence asked him to bring the remaining cash for the passport or else he would destroy it, said a senior police officer.

Following the complaint, the sleuths nabbed Harvinder Singh, Pawan Kumar and Harish Kumar from Connaught Place Feb 4 and recovered the passport having fake Canadian visa and forged documents and a Santro car with fake registration number. Their associate Anil Arora was also apprehended later.

During interrogation, Harvinder Singh told police that he used to send SMSes at random to mobile users in Punjab informing them that their work relating Canadian Visa had been done.

When some of them would enquire about the procedure, he would entrap them and ask them to come to Delhi. In Delhi, he would introduce his associate Harish Kumar as an official of the Canadian Embassy and a deal would then be struck for Rs.7 lakh to Rs.8 lakh, said the officer.

Then the accused would paste a fake visa sticker on the passport, take the money and on some pretext retain the passport and never return it and switch off his mobile phone which was taken on fake documents. Anil Arora provided the fake visa stickers from one Dhannu, a resident of Paschim Vihar for Rs.35,000.

“Till now, they have cheated more than 12 to 15 people, said the officer.

Harvinder Singh, a commerce graduate from Delhi University, used to send skilled and unskilled labourers to Dubai and Malaysia on work permit and visa through registered agencies. He then invested in the stock market and suffered huge losses. After this, he started duping people desiring to go to Canada.

Efforts are on to apprehend Dhannu, said the officer.

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