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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Army, Pune Police bust fake recruitment racket which extorted money from young people

The racketeers conducted fake exams, medical tests and training sessions at various locations in the country and lured people with Territorial Army, railway and banks jobs.

Written by Sushant Kulkarni | Pune |
Updated: June 2, 2021 4:03:05 pm
Pune arrestThe Army press statement said that on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday, two alleged kingpins of the racket, identified as Bharat Krishna Kate and Pandit Pawar, were arrested from Solapur.

Following an input from the intelligence agencies of Southern Command of Indian Army, the Pune Police, in a joint operation with the former, busted a racket which conducted fake recruitment to Territorial Army (TA), Indian Railways and various banks, and extorted money from young people.

The racket, through a fraudulent website, conducted fake exams, medical tests and training sessions at various locations in the country.

The Army press statement said that on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday, two alleged kingpins of the racket, identified as Bharat Krishna Kate and Pandit Pawar, were arrested from Solapur, along with ample evidence, by a team from the crime branch. “These touts were charging Rs 4 to 5 lakh from aspiring candidates giving them false promises for their selection in government services. The innocent aspirants were made to believe about their selection through fake call letters, admit cards, joining letters, medicals and training at dubious locations. The duo is part of a bigger racket which is being probed by the crime branch and Army,” the release stated.

Sleuths from the Southern Command Military Intelligence had been analysing threads of a case in which a recruitment letter claiming to be from the Territorial Army was issued to a candidate and results of a recruitment process were published on a website with a similar-looking domain to that of the TA recruitment process. The racketeers had even published a list of selected candidates by classifying them under the Army command they came from.

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A press statement from Southern Command of the Army in this regard said, “A fraudulent recruitment module involving the issuance of recruitment documents and circulation of results of prospective candidates through fake websites, for their selection into various government services like railways, banking and Territorial Army being run from Pune, was exposed jointly by Army and Police authorities based on an input provided by the intelligence agencies of the Southern Command.”

The Southern Command press release added, “The module had recently hosted a fake website of the Territorial Army and had uploaded names of selected candidates on it. The investigation further revealed that they were charging hefty amounts for the fraudulent recruitment from innocent aspirants wanting to join various government services. The aspirants were not only charged for their selection but also were made to bear the expenses of travel, boarding and lodging during their trips to different dubious locations for fraudulent written exams, medical tests and training post the fraudulent recruitment.”

The latest joint action by Army and Pune police comes months after they jointly busted another racket which leaked the questions of soldier recruitment exams in February. The case has till now seen nine arrests including that of three serving Army officers — a Lieutenant Colonel and two Majors, two serving soldiers, three ex-servicemen and one civilian.

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