Chandigarh man duped of ₹3.66 crore in online trading fraud - Hindustan Times
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Chandigarh man duped of 3.66 crore in online trading fraud

By, Chandigarh
May 25, 2024 08:34 AM IST

Complainant Surinder Kumar accused SMCLE, a subsidiary of SMC Global Securities Limited, and three other people, identified as Ankita Gupta, Rahul Sharma and Manish Kumar, all from Chandigarh of duping him

A 68-year-old resident of Sector 49 in Chandigarh lost 3.66 crore to cyber fraudsters who lured him to invest in stock trading between February and March, said police.

The Chandigarh resident said he was added to a WhatsApp group named “P15 Stock Market Exchange Club” created in December 2023. (Getty image)
The Chandigarh resident said he was added to a WhatsApp group named “P15 Stock Market Exchange Club” created in December 2023. (Getty image)

Complainant Surinder Kumar accused SMCLE, a subsidiary of SMC Global Securities Limited, and three other people, identified as Ankita Gupta, Rahul Sharma and Manish Kumar, all from Chandigarh, of duping him. Kumar said he was added to a WhatsApp group named “P15 Stock Market Exchange Club” created in December 2023.

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Gupta used to share stock market trends and Sharma claimed to be a teacher and shared notes on market analysis. On January 12, the victim was approached by Gupta to arrange an appointment with Sharma regarding investment in “golden stocks”. He later joined the WhatsApp group, where they would share stock predictions in the evening which Kumar found to come true. On January 30, he was told that they will pull up 2-3 shares with institutions with a potential of 10-20% returns.

Upon becoming interested, he was told that Sharma had made arrangements for a few shares with SMCLE with up to 30% returns. However, on February 5 he was informed that he can’t buy the shares through his demat account and an institutional account is required to purchase their recommended upper circuit stocks as it has priority over demat accounts.

He was given Manish’s contact details to open the account. He downloaded the SMCLE trading app and Kumar shared the links of the websites in March. While Kumar’s SMCLE app was not working properly he was told that SMCLE is a major institution account and he had a sub-account. Following Manish’s guidance, Kumar had invested 3,66,25,000 till March 25. Later, when he was unable to withdraw the money, he realised that he had been cheated and approached the police.

A case under Sections 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating), 467 (forgery of valuable security, will, etc), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document or electronic record), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was registered at the cyber crime police station. The accused are yet to be arrested.

On May 19, the Punjab State cyber crime police station had also registered a case after retired Colonel Sanjay Bhatia of Sector 68 was duped of 2.5 crore by fraudsters posing as investment experts. In a similar modus operandi, he was also made to join a WhatsApp group and used to get investment lectures over there before duping him by making him invest the money and refusing to let him withdraw it.

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