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Four held in Mumbra for routing calls abroad at cheap rates

Mumbra police said the men set up the telephone exchange to route international calls via Voice over Internet Protocol. Most calls were made to Gulf countries.

mumbai Updated: Aug 15, 2018 04:53 IST
Arvind Walmiki
Arvind Walmiki
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Telephone exchange,Mumbra,cheap rates
The accused charged customers less than the prevailing rates for international calls, thereby incurring losses to the state exchequer.(HT File)

Four men were arrested on Tuesday for allegedly running illegal telephone exchanges from four flats at Mumbra in Thane for the past 18 months.

The four men, who are friends, are from Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh and live within a distance of 100 metres at Kadar Palace in Kausa area of Mumbra. The police have recovered 25 wi-fi routers, 285 SIM cards of various service providers, five mobile chargers, one laptop, 96 antenna cables from Shehjad Nisar Shaikh, 30; Shakil Iklakh Ahmed Shaikh, 40; Mohammed Halim Mukhtar Ahmed Khan, 36; and Wasiullah Iklakh Ahmed Shaikh, 32.

According to the Mumbra police, the men set up the telephone exchange to route international calls via Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Most calls were routed to Gulf countries.They charged customers less than the prevailing rates for international calls, thereby incurring losses to the state exchequer. The police are yet to peg the extent of losses.

Madhukar Pandey, joint commissioner of Thane police, said, “The four men had been running this telephone exchange for many months. They have been remanded in police custody till August 18. We are investigating if people from abroad connived with them in the racket.”

The lid on the racket blew off after four teams raided as many houses of the men.

D Swami, deputy commissioner, Zone 1, said, “We formed four teams, which were headed by senior inspector Kishore Pasalkar of Mumbra police. In a late night swoop, we raided all houses and seized all gadgets.”

The police have identified the kingpin as Sameer, who lives in Dubai.

First Published: Aug 15, 2018 04:53 IST