Abandoned by travel agents in Bangkok, they didn’t have money to buy a single meal
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Abandoned by travel agents in Bangkok, they didn’t have money to buy a single meal

The two claim that they were told to hand over Rs 18 lakh after their visa was arranged in Bangkok, where they were halted on the pretext of a medical examination.

punjab Updated: Aug 19, 2018 11:46 IST
Tarsem Singh Deogan
Tarsem Singh Deogan
Hindustan Times, Ludhiana
bangkok,travel agents,canada
Bharminder Singh and his mother Sukhwinder Kaur.(HT photo)

In hope for a better life in Canada, Bharminder Singh and his mother’s dreams were shattered when the travel agents abandoned them in a hostel room in Bangkok and fled with their money, passports and important documents.

It all started in 2017 when Bharminder, 20, and his mother Sukhwinder Kaur, 42, of Paddi village in Ludhiana decided to settle in Canada and approached a city-based travel agent for the same.

The two claim that they were told to hand over Rs 18 lakh after their visa was arranged in Bangkok, where they were halted on the pretext of a medical examination.

“They made us stay in a tiny and cheap hostel room and arranged food for us. On June 18, 2017, they showed papers claiming them to be our visas. Then they made us call our relatives in India and as part of our deal, we were told to hand over Rs 18 lakh to their partners,” says Kaur.

“After the travel agents got their money, they never returned. They fled with our documents and passports. We were left with no money and couldn’t afford food. We starved for three days. Later, following the advice of my father we contacted the local police, who took us to the Indian Embassy. He arranged air tickets for our return to India, “she adds.

“Luckily, the travel agents did not take our mobile phones and we called our relatives who helped us return,” says Bharminder.

“The travel agents, Aslam Mugal and Anwar Mohammad of Mandi Ahmadgarh, duped us of ₹18 lakh and used our money to move to Canada. After one year of filing complaint and making uncountable rounds to the police station, the case was finally registered on August 12,” he adds.

‘Back-breaking debt’

Bharminder says that the family lost all their savings to fraudsters and adds that since they borrowed money from friends and relatives with a hope to return them once they were settled abroad, they are left with nothing, but debt.

“Lenders are making rounds of our home. The police have registered a case but how will we get our money back?” asks Sukwinder.

Bharminder’s maternal grandfather Najar Singh , an ex-serviceman, says he decided to send his daughter and grandson to Canada for their better future.

First Published: Aug 18, 2018 12:18 IST