A YOUNG woman has been running from pillar to post for the investigation of a case registered at the Mulund police station. The police could not be bothered less, as they have not only failed to solve the case but also informed the woman that they are taking the advice of a private cyber expert who charges Rs 5,000 per hour.
On March 25, 2017, the Mulund police station registered an FIR (copy with ABI) under sections 500 and 509 of the IPC and 66 (K), 67 and 67 (A) of the Information Technology Act on a complaint from Sheetal Singh (name changed to protect identity). Sheetal is a resident of Mulund (West) and an employee of a shipment company in Bhandup (West).
According to Sheetal, on March 17, she started getting calls from boys. They would straightaway begin with vulgar talk and make indecent proposals. They would send vulgar messages and videos too. Fed up, Sheetal asked them from where they had got hold of her mobile number. A boy named Gurupreet Singh from Punjab told her that he had got her mobile number on a Facebook group called PADOSAN KA ADDA. Sheetal checked the Facebook account and found that her mobile number was posted on the PADOSAN KA ADDA group, with the name Riya Pravin and the display picture of some other girl.
To track the culprit, Sheetal created an account on Facebook by the fake name of Priyanka Sahani. She also found that she had removed a person named Meraj Ahmed Ansari from her WhatsApp ‘Job Group.’ Meraj requested several times to be re-added to the group, but Sheetal refused. Sheetal now suspects that Meraj, to take revenge, posted her mobile number with a fake account in PADOSAN KA ADDA.
Sheetal approached the Mulund police station to register an FIR but was forced to wait a couple of days by the lax attitude of the officials. “Mulund police FIR register karne ke mood me nahin thi. Koi na koi bahana banakar dusare din aane ko kahti thi,” said Sheetal.
On the third day, the police registered an FIR. Since then Sheetal has been visiting on a daily basis the Mulund police station to see if there is any development in the case. One day an officer told her that he did not know how to tackle the cyber matter. When Sheetal insisted he do his job, the police officer gave her a mobile number, informing her that he was taking advice from a private cyber-crime expert. Sheetal contacted that expert to be updated about the case but the expert told her that his charges were Rs 5,000 per hour. If she was ready to pay he would solve the case.
“I am shocked to hear this. The Mulund police are solving the case through a private cyber expert who is very expensive. Who will pay the Rs 5,000 per hour? And I fail to understand that if there is a cyber-police station in Mumbai police, why Mulund police are not forwarding the case to them?” said Sheetal.