Social media has made connecting and staying in touch with people infinitely easier. But it has also made creating fake accounts child’s play. And fraudsters are taking advantage of this to con people left, right and centre. There have been instances of people taking money from fans after promising a meeting with their favourite celebrity and also ones with fake Instagram profiles extorting money from teenagers.
A 38-year-old woman from Mumbai recently fell victim to fraud as well. She got married in 2009, later filed for divorce and now lives with her eight-year-old son. On February 24, 2018, she received a request from Vikram Mohan (an alleged widower with 2 kids) on a Marathi matrimonial website.
The Indian Express quoted her saying,
“After I accepted his request, we started chatting. He introduced himself as an engineer working in the US and claimed that his wife had died in an accident.”
She further added,
“He said he would bring his children to Mumbai in April and also plan for our marriage. In April, he said he has got a road construction contract due to which he won’t be able to come to Mumbai and postponed the marriage.”
In April 2018, he told her that he urgently needed Rs.10 lacs which he would pay back on reaching Mumbai. Subsequently, he asked for an additional Rs.22 lacs and then Rs.50 lacs while postponing the wedding date until May 2019. After this, he deleted his profile and his number went out of service.
DNA India quoted a police official saying,
“The victim initially paid the amount and then Mohan started asking for more. He gave bank account details of a Mumbai Central based bank. In the name of construction materials, labour, logistics, machinery and other expenses, he managed to get Rs.82 lakh from the victim and he was still asking for more. When the victim said she was broke, Mohan stopped communicating with her.”
A case of cheating has been filed at the victim’s request and an investigation is underway.