Pune Police, Army bust fake job racket run by sacked military man

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Pune Police, Army bust fake job racket run by sacked military man

Pune (Maharashtra): In a joint operation, the Indian Army’s Military Intelligence Southern Command and Pune Police busted a fake recruitment scam of over Rs 32 lakh, allegedly being perpetrated by a dismissed military man, officials said here on Wednesday.

One person, identified as Sandeep B. Gurav, 43, who had joined the Corps of Electronic & Mechanical Engineering in 2003, but was dismissed from service after he deserted the force for seven years, has been arrested in the fake jobs scam now.

The police and MI had kept Gurav, hailing from Kolhapur, under surveillance for over two months, but suddenly went missing till he was finally caught on the premises of the Military Hospital in Kirkee, Pune.

As per the Pune Police FIR, he had allegedly cheated at least three prospective job-seekers of more than Rs 32 lakh on the lure of getting them lucrative jobs in the Indian Army establishment here.

Gurav, at the time of his arrest, was accompanied by a woman Ashwini L. Patil, who has been detained and being questioned by the Kirkee Police Station officials.

According to a complaint lodged by the victim, S.R. Wagare of Kolhapur, he was introduced to Gurav by a family friend, touting him as a very influential person who had recently retired from the Army but had good connections to get jobs.

Wagare said at that time, his nephew Ajinkya B. Redekar was preparing to join the Army and asked Gurav whether he could help out in the matter, to which he agreed and called them to Pune.

Accordingly, on November 26, 2020, Wagare, Redekar and others went to meet Gurav at the military hospital in Kirkee, and he threw the bait even for other relatives — Wagare’s wife and her brother — for jobs.

He claimed that some urgent vacancies were required to be filled up in the military hospital and after they consented, took them to meet one Army officer Suraj Singh who assured them that the three hopefuls, Redekar, wife Madhuri and her brother Vishwas D. Chougule — would be given jobs, with a ‘charge’ of Rs 12 lakh each.

Wagare agreed and later arranged for the money — a total of Rs 29.10 lakh — which he paid to Gurav in instalments and they pursued their job matter for months, but he remained evasive and gave excuses for the Covid-19 pandemic for the delays.

Finally, in July 2021, Gurav called them and handed the trio their purported ‘appointment letters’ and identity cards, on letterheads, logo and rubber stamps.

Thrilled by this, the trio went to the Military Hospital on July 12, 2021, to take charge of their new jobs, but were shocked when the gate security stopped them and said that all their documents were ‘fake’ — and it dawned on them that they were taken for a ride and duped by Gurav.

Ultimately after complaints lodged with the Kolhapur Police, Pune Police and MI, the authorities swung into investigation and nabbed Gurav late on Tuesday (July 2) almost four years after the fraud, and further investigations are underway.


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