Delhi Police cracking down on website offering fake e-visa to foreigners
Five foreigners have been deported from Delhi airport within a month with fake visas so far.delhi Updated: Jun 05, 2017 22:00 IST
The Delhi Police have unearthed a website which was issuing fake Indian visa.
So far, five foreigners have been deported from Delhi airport within a month who were issued visa from the website. In almost all cases, the victim had paid around 200 US dollars on the website for Indian visa.
The first case was reported on April 21, when three US citizens arrived from the UAE. They had e-visas. The scrutiny of their travel papers by immigration officials showed that the visa issued to them was actually issued to in the name of some other passengers.
The ministry of home affairs runs Indianvisaonline.gov.in to provide online visa to the foreigners. The operators of the website chose a similar name, Indiavisa.org.in, to dupe those seeking e-visa for India.
In the second case, on May 7, a Mexican citizen was deported from Delhi airport, when the immigration official noticed that the visa issued to him was fabricated. Investigation revealed that he had applied for e-visa on a fake portal.
“On May 7, the Mexican national arrived at Delhi airport by Air France flight AF 226. He approached the e-visa counter for immigration clearance but when officials checked his visa details in their records, the visa was found to be issued to another Mexican passenger,” said a senior police officer.
The third incident took place on May 23, when a US woman citizen, who had paid 213 dollars for the e-visa, was deported for having the same fake visa clearance.
In all the cases, it was established the duped passengers had applied for visa on Indiavisa.org.in and received an email that they can arrive in India, said a senior police officer.
As per the rule, for e-visa, foreigners have to apply at Indianvisaonline.gov.in and after verification, an Electronic Travel Approval (ETA) is sent to the applicant. After arriving at the airport, the immigration official verifies the ETA and issues visa to the applicant.
“Technical details have been sought to identify the user ID and user details of the alleged portal and also the bank details of the beneficiary account. Also, interlinks are being developed in the three cases,” DCP (airport) Sanjay Bhatia said.
Sources said the police will approach the ministry of external affairs and the ministry of home affairs to get the website blocked and obtain the IP address to initiate action.
Investigators said that most likely, the website is being operated from outside India.