The Kolsewadi police in Kalyan have busted a three-member gang that adopted a unique modus operandi to cheat people standing in queues at banks to deposit money.
On Tuesday, the police arrested Tulsiram Chandrakant Yadav (35) and Umesh Ramesh Kushwaha (25), both residents of Shahad in Ulhasnagar-1. Their accomplice is absconding.
The accused have confessed to having cheated many people in Vashi, Dombivli, Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Kalyan and even Pune.
Many people stand in queues in government-run banks, wanting to deposit money into the accounts of family members. Migrants are known to use this method to send money home, and they wait in line for hours. The gang of three used an unheard-of technique to cheat such people of their money.
On May 23, Shailesh Mishra, a resident of Khadegolavali in Kalyan (East) had registered an FIR claiming that he been cheated of Rs 40,000 by the accused using the same modus operandi.
Mishra was standing in a long queue at the Kolsewadi branch of the State Bank of India.
In order to catch the gang, Macchindra Chavan, senior inspector at Kolsewadi police station formed a special team.
The team kept a close watch on all banks in Kolsewadi, and nabbed the trio when they were spotted roaming around the same bank branch where they had conned Mishra.
According to the accused, they have used the same method to con several people at different places in Mumbai, Thane and Pune.
They also revealed that their main targets were migrants from north India, who formed the majority of people who stood in the snaking queues at banks.
“We have arrested Yadav and Kushwaha under section 420 and section 34 of the Indian Penal Code,” said Chavan.
How the gang cheated people
>> One member of the gang would come and survey the queue for a target
>> Then, the second member, Yadav, would go up to the target and cook up a story that he had stolen a large sum of money from his employer who hadn’t paid his salary for several months. He would show him a bundle of 500-rupee notes wrapped in a handkerchief, the cash that he had ‘stolen’. But since he didn’t have a bank account and wanted to send money home, he’d claim, he would ask the target to deposit the money in his own account. Yadav would then leave, leaving the bundle of notes with the target
>> The third gang member, Kushwaha, would come up to the target and convince him to take the money himself and not deposit it in the account, saying that the ‘thief’ would never be able to trace him. The target, thinking that he had just been handed lakhs of rupees by a ‘foolish thief’, would immediately agree. Kushwaha would then leave
>> Yadav would then come back, asking for some money to buy a ticket, clothes, sweets for children and jewellery for his wife
>> The target would then give his own money that he had come to deposit in the bank. This is how Mishra ended up giving the gang Rs 40,000 of his own money that he was going to deposit in his account
>> The bundle of the lakhs of rupees of ‘stolen cash’ later turned out to be layers of plain paper with a five hundred-rupee note on top
>> The three would then split the money they got from the target