THE DEPARTMENT of Telecommunications (DoT) is feared to have incurred revenue loss of over Rs three crore due to the parallel telephone exchange being operated by the gang that was busted from E-7, 195 Arera Colony on November 7.
The culprits were routing almost 20000 ISD calls per day from various locations through their exchange, the police said. ASP (New Bhopal) Dr G K Pathak told the Hindustan Times on Friday the culprits were paying about Rs five lakh per month as call charges to Reliance. They had taken two `primary rate interface’ lines from Reliance to operate the exchange, he added.
The rent of one line is Rs 45000 per month and the accused were paying Rs 90000 monthly to Reliance for operating the two lines, besides the call charges. Police and DoT authorities held a meeting on Friday to work out the exact amount of money that the culprits laundered through the exchange.
Dr Pathak said the amount could well be running into several lakhs of rupees per month. ‘If the culprits were paying almost Rs six lakh per month officially to Reliance, their monthly profit might easily be more than Rs three lakh,’’ Dr Pathak opined.
The ASP pointed out that a very crucial point for the police investigation is the possibility of the gang’s involvement in some anti-national activities. He said it is almost certain that the gang is involved in the hawala racket. Besides a thorough probe into the possibility of its association in activities that could pose a threat to national security was also of prime importance.
The DoT’s vigilance branch had received a complaint from New Delhi about the gang’s activities. Based on that information, the authorities initiated investigations into the racket and finally the gang was busted.
The main culprit Sanjay Singh is, however, still absconding and the police are trying to ascertain his whereabouts through interrogation of the arrested gang member, Abhay Johri.
Accused had 60 ISD lines
POLICE SAID a ‘primary rate interface’ line was a line provided by a telecom company to a licensed operator, one that the latter could get 30 parallel lines to operate.
The accused Sanjay Singh had taken two such lines from Reliance. He thus had 60 ISD lines that were operated from the exchange using a Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP).
The gang converted Internet calls into voice calls and managed to charge local rates from the telecom company, as the person receiving the ISD call actually got a local number displayed on his/her telephone, police said.
House owner booked
POLICE HAVE booked Mehtab Singh – owner of E-7, 195 Arera Colony from where the telephone exchange was being operated - under Section 188 of the CrPC for not providing the mandatory information about his tenants’ identity to the area’s police station.
Dr Pathak pointed out that police had been repeatedly instructing all house owners to compulsorily provide information about their respective tenants and action would be initiated against all those who failed to do so.