5 arrested in fake recruitment scam in Kupwara: Police

The SSP said that Shakeel Ahmad Makroo emerged as the kingpin, operating under the alias Raju, presenting himself as an influential Kashmiri Pandit and an MES officer stationed at Rangreth, Srinagar.
The SSP said that Shakeel Ahmad Makroo emerged as the kingpin, operating under the alias Raju, presenting himself as an influential Kashmiri Pandit and an MES officer stationed at Rangreth, Srinagar.

Kupwara: A fake recruitment scam was busted in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district while five persons involved in the scam were arrested, Police said on Tuesday.

Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Kupwara, Yougal Manhas told Greater Kashmir that on September 1, Police Station Kralpora received a written complaint from Mumtaz Ahmad Mir of Gund Zonareshi, Chowkibal alleging that his son had fallen victim to a recruitment scam orchestrated by Nazir Ahmad Khan of Doolipora, Trehgam.

“Mir in his complaint maintained that his son was duped of Rs 70000 under the pretext of giving him a job in Military Engineering Service (MES). Acting promptly, Police Station Kralpora initiated legal proceedings by registering an FIR vide number 76/2023. During investigation, statements from key witnesses were recorded, and counterfeit appointment letters were seized as evidence. Nazir Ahmad Khan was subsequently apprehended in connection with the scam," the SSP said. "Further investigation revealed his affiliation with a group of scammers employing a distinctive modus operandi to defraud unemployed youths eagerly seeking positions within MES. He further revealed the identities of his four collaborators as Zahoor Ahmad Mir of Rawathpora, Shakeel Ahmad Makroo of Awantipora, Feroz Ahmad Khashu of Shalteng, Srinagar, and Shafkat Ahmad Shah of Pampore, Pulwama. Acting swiftly resulted in the arrest of all four individuals."

The SSP said that Shakeel Ahmad Makroo emerged as the kingpin, operating under the alias Raju, presenting himself as an influential Kashmiri Pandit and an MES officer stationed at Rangreth, Srinagar.

He enlisted the assistance of Zahoor Ahmad Mir, Feroz Ahmad Khashu, and Nazir Ahmad Khan as field agents, entrusted with the task of extracting money from unsuspecting job seekers, and promising them MES positions.

"Shafkat Ahmad Shah, the technical expert of the operation, was responsible for fabricating and printing counterfeit appointment letters and other documentation. He operated from the 'Helpline Advertising Agency' in Rangreth, Srinagar, where he has prepared these fraudulent documents," the SSP said.

"The gang has duped approximately eight innocent unemployed youth hailing from north Kashmir, amassing an illicit sum of roughly Rs 25 lakh. Substantial evidence, including counterfeit appointment letters, gate passes, laptops, desktops, printers, and cell phones have been seized from the possession of the accused," he said.

The SSP said that more arrests in this case could not be ruled out.

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