October 21, 2022

A month after it was unearthed that scammers were manipulating the booking system and charging people for darshan at the Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai, a total of 9 people were arrested in connection to the case, reported Mid Day.

During the investigation, the Dadar police found that a group of flower sellers and shopkeepers who operated outside the temple sold illegal QR codes to devotees for darshan. The temple authorities had filed a complaint with the police, following which a case of registered. The Dadar police then carried out raids at the shops, located in the vicinity of the temple.

The cops confiscated the cell phones of 13 shopkeepers. During the raid, they matched the QR codes that were found in the mobile phones of the accused and matched it with the CCTV footage of the temple. The police had discovered that the shopkeeper who had booked the slot for darshan did not visit the temple while someone else did on the particular slot. As such, the police were able to identify and nab the 9 accused.

The apprehended men include Sanjay Keer, Niraj Barai, Chandan Kawali, Amit Kumar Gupta, Dilip Gupta, Deepak Upadhyay, Dinesh Gupta, Naresh Amganty, and Haridas Tiwari. They were booked under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 33 (Omission), 34 (common intention), 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating), and relevant provisions of the Bombay Police Act.

While speaking to Mid Day, a police officer explained that a devotee needs to book an online slot on the…

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