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Gujarat farmer duped of ₹6.5 cr in a fake mobile tower deal

Updated: Oct 6th, 2023

Mobile Tower Scam in Bhuj (img: Envato Elements)

A bogus mobile tower installation deal lured a farmer into spending a staggering ₹6.5 cr. The deal promised hefty returns for installing the tower on his land in a village in Bhuj district.

A complaint has been registered in CID (Crime), border zone, Kutch district against six people from Delhi and Odisha over a fraud of nearly ₹6.5 cr.

Perpetrators from parts of Delhi-Odisha

A resident of Naranpar Pasayati village in Bhuj district has accused Ajayant Singh and Sanjay Shinde of Noida-south Delhi, Akhilesh Shambhu Pandey of central Delhi, Narayanswami Reddy, Masih Charan Topno, and Ifrim Laka of Odisha’s Sundargarh in the case.

As per the complaint, in Jan–Feb 2018 he received a phone call from an individual named Govind Kant, who claimed to be a life insurance agent from Delhi.

Kant sold an insurance policy worth ₹2.7 lakh. He in turn was also promised to install a mobile tower of Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited on his land.

Later, the culprits demanded another ₹1.5 lakh for the installation of the mobile tower, but he declined to pay and instead withdrew his policy.

Farmer sold off valuables and belongings to arrange money

After revoking the policy, he received a call from Jayant Singh, who claimed to be a telecom company representative. He established that his company intended to install a mobile tower on his land and offered a monthly rent of ₹30,000 to ₹35,000.

Singh proposed a 15-year agreement over the mobile tower deal, after which the farmer presented the land’s documents for verification.

An agreement to set up four towers on the land was drawn. As per this, the farmer had to bear the cost of ₹2.5 lakh per tower, including  machine costs of the towers, transportation costs, etc.

The farmer loaned off his land and his wife’s jewellery, sold the land registered in her name and borrowed money from his friends to arrange the mobile tower installation amount of ₹6.5 crores, he stated in the complaint. However, it still is not clear why he had to pay off such a huge amount. As per the complaint, he also had to pay GST and other variable costs.  

Once paid, he received a soft copy of the receipt, which also had ‘an official stamp and signature of the telecom company’.

As per the complaint, no communication has been made by the people involved to date. Several attempts were made to contact them, but they have been unreachable.

Police have registered the complaint and have initiated a probe into this matter.

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