THE CHANDIGARH Police on Wednesday arrested two Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh, residents — Mahesh Malli and Rajesh Upadhaya — in connection with fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 1.33 crore from the Non-Residential Ordinary (NRO) account of a US-based NRI, Dr Ajay Sood.
The police said the two are the members of an interstate gang, which was involved in fraudulent transfers of crores of rupees from several bank accounts in Gurgaon, Delhi, MP and Punjab. In Chandigarh, the involvement of the gang was came to light in two cases, in which gang members withdrew around Rs 1.87 crore from the accounts of NRI Dr Ajay Sood and from the account of one Sulakshana Devi, a retired government employee, in July 2018.
The two accounts were in Bank of India, Sector 17. Rs 53.50 lakh was withdrawn from the account of Sulakshana Devi. Two accused were arrested in the case of NRI settled in California. Mahesh Malli and Rajesh Upadhaya were brought to the district courts, Sector 17, on production warrants by the MP Police and later, the UT Police arrested them. They were remanded in six-day police custody. In MP, they were lodged in Ujjain jail.
Earlier, the police arrested four men — the owner of Bablu Cycle Services, a franchise of a leading cycle brand in Mehidpur in Ujjain, Mukesh Kumar, along with Sachin Yadav of Gurugram, Satish Yadav of Mahendragarh in Haryana, and Avinash Prajapati of Ujjain — in this connection. All four are currently lodged at Model Burail jail.
Police sources said, “The mastermind of the gang is still absconding. The mastermind, whose identity cannot be disclose, used to pay them commission ranging from Rs 50,000 to Rs 3 lakh. The arrested people were aware of the facts that their bank accounts were being used in the crime.”
DSP (EOW) Sukhraj Katewa said, “Police investigation reveals the gang members used to clone the confidential details of account holders. Cloned details included the procuring duplicate cheque books and the signatures of account holders. In the case of Dr Ajay Sood and Sulakshna Devi, accused procured the duplicate cheques of the NRI doctor and woman, and transferred the amount in two instalments with fake signatures of the complainant. The mastermind of the gang is still absconding. We are also verifying the role of Bank of India staff members. So far, no involvement of bank employees has come to light.”