Police find 26 fake sites for MHADA lottery 2018

Jun 27, 2018, 19:00 IST | Rahul Mahajani and Hajra Bi

An FIR has been filed, but no arrests have been made; It is not yet known how many people have applied for flats on these sites

Police find 26 fake sites for MHADA lottery 2018
Senior MHADA officials received many queries about the lottery, and in an internal probe, the IT Department of the housing body found the websites.

The next time you file an application for a flat from the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) online, be very careful, as the Kherwadi police have found 26 fake websites of the government agency for the 2018 lottery in Mumbai. The matter came to light after senior MHADA officials received many queries about the lottery, and in an internal probe, the IT Department of the housing body found the websites.

Sanjay Bhagwat, a senior MHADA official, said that when they were asked to look into the case, they just typed ‘MHADA lottery 2018’ on a search engine and found many such websites which contained information their department had not given. "These websites had misleading information which is why we informed the police," he added.

No arrests so far
The police conducted an inquiry after which a first information report (FIR) was filed on June 22. Senior police inspector of Kherwadi Police Station, Rajendra Patil confirmed that an FIR was filed, but so far no arrests have been made. He further added that they had sought the help of the cyber cell of the police. So far it is not known how many people have applied on these sites for flats, or whether any money was exchanged.

Sources in the police said during the probe they had detained a person, but it was found that he was not involved, after which they have sought the help of the cyber police to crack the case and are tracing the IP addresses of these websites.

Sites mirrored original
In the probe so far, police have also found that cyber fraudsters prepared websites that mirrored the original site, and could mislead people. Police suspect that more than one person could be involved in the case.

MHADA is likely to have a lottery for over 1,000 houses for HIG, MIG and LIG in July or August this year in Mumbai, while its 2018 lottery for Pune is currently underway.

The Kherwadi police have filed a case under Indian Penal Code - Sections 417 (Punishment for cheating), 419 (Punishment for cheating by personation), 420 (Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 511 (Punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other) and under information technology act section 66 (D) (Punishment for cheating by personation by using computer resource).

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These websites had misleading information which is why we informed the police
Sanjay Bhagwat, Senior MHADA official

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