The district (rural) police have arrested a couple for duping three Kartarpur men of Rs 7 lakh on the promise of providing them a job in the Merchant Navy.
The couple's planning ran deep and they also allegedly opened fake institutes in Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and Secunderabad (Andhra Pradesh).
The fraud was discovered in December 2012, when Gurdavar Singh and Harbhajan Singh, residents of Kartarpur, lodged a complaint with the police that the couple identified as Mohinder Singh (70) and his wife Surinder Kaur (62) had duped them of Rs 7 lakh each for three of their wards on the promise of securing a job in the merchant navy, Kartatpur SHO Inderjit Singh told HT.
The complainant alleged that after getting Rs 7 each, the men were sent for training in Varanasi, named Sea International Maritime Academy, for three months and was then sent to Secunderabad.
The accused claimed that their son and daughter-in-law owned a shipping company in Malaysia and that they were also ferried to an isolated island in Malaysia and were forced to do odd jobs.
Gurpreet Singh, Gurjinder Singh and Harpreet Singh, the three youth, have alleged that more than 200 youth were there at the Malaysian island.
The SHO said that after verification of the complaint, a case was registered against the couple on December 27, last year at the Kartarpur police station under Sections 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating) of the IPC.
The police had recently a tip-off, which said that the accused couple had come to Dayarpur village of Kartarpur to meet their relatives, a trap was laid and the couple was nabbed, the SHO said. During preliminary interrogation, the accused admitted to have duped around 300 people from different states and several of them were living at Shibu Island of Malaysia, SP Rajinder Singh told HT.
Efforts are on to approach the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to seek its intervention to save the lives of hundreds of youth, who are forced to live under miserable condition on foreign land, the SP said.
The SP said that after investigations, it was also found that the two academies were fake and added that it was likely that an international organised gang was behind the human trafficking.