New Delhi: The Delhi Police has registered 372 FIRs and arrested 91 people in connection with cheating cases related to COVID-19 issues.
The police said that some organized cheaters took advantage of the common people’s distress owing to the uncertainties around questions related to movements, medicine, oxygen, etc.
They launched an “Operation Cyber Prahaar” to track and capture the fraudsters involved in misleading and duping people.
“The onset of 2nd wave of COVID-19 brought into force a partial lockdown. With uncertainties around several questions related to movements, medicine, oxygen, etc., the SM Monitoring Cell of Delhi Police, being closely monitored by CP Delhi, started answering the concerned public with relevant answers and guidance,” the Delhi Police said in a statement.
“Organized cheaters were as if all were waiting for this human tragedy to unfold. There was a sudden and substantial change in the nature of distress calls being received with #covidcheat becoming most important amongst all others within a day or two,” they added.
The Delhi police said that they augmented the capacities of its COVID Helpline 01123469900 for reporting COVID cheat cases.
“The District Cyber Cells and Cybercrime Unit of Crime Branch joined hands with CyPAD and a system of generation of 12 hourly situation reports on complaints and FIR was established,” said the police.
“Continuous analysis of registered cases and complaints indicated that while a majority of suspect SIM cards were subscribed and sourced from one state, the places from where these SIM cards were being used was another State. Moreover, the beneficiary accounts where these SIM users were receiving cheated money were scattered all over the country – states like West Bengal, Bihar, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, and Karnataka appeared as being highly affected by the presence of this cybercriminal network,” they added.
“Delhi Police has registered 372 FIRs against Covid cheats, arrested 91 persons, seized 95 devices, and frozen 214 bank accounts within the cheated amount of Rupees 53 lakh 60 thousand,” the statement read.