Mumbai Crime Watch: Fashion designer duped of Rs 87,000 by serial fraudster who posed as CBI/RAW agent

A 20-year-old fashion designer was duped to the tune of ₹87,500 by an accused woman, on the pretext of renting out his apartment and taking an advance payment from the woman through an online transaction. The fashion designer, who had uploaded an apartment requirement on social media, was contacted by the accused and then duped. A case has been registered at Khar police station, where the accused has been booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Information Technology Act.

According to Khar police officials, the Pune-based fashion designer, who was looking for an apartment in Mumbai, had uploaded a post on social networking site, enquiring if there was any flat available for rent in Khar-Bandra area on March 14. The FIR, was however, lodged on July 3. In a couple of days, a woman identified as Krutika Batra had approached the fashion designer and said that there is a flat on the 19th Road in Khar, where the deposit would be ₹1.25 lakh and rent would be ₹52,000.

After having a telephonic conversation and sharing a few pictures of the apartment, Batra asked the woman to make the payment in a bank account, which did not belong to her, after which the fashion designer's father wired ₹87,500. Batra soon stopped entertaining calls, messages from the fashion designer upon enquiring about the rental contract and switched off her phone. A few days later, when she came back online, the woman called her, only to be told that she works as a RAW and CBI agent and challenged her to do anything in her capacity.

The fashion designer then contacted a Parikshit Arya, on social media, in whose account she had wired the money, only to learn that Batra had asked Arya to share his bank details as she was to get a bank transfer from China and needed an Indian bank account. Batra then asked to wire this money in her father's account. Arya also told the fashion designer that he met Batra on a dating website and he too was allegedly duped by her on the pretext of joining the RAW or CBI as an agent. Arya too, allegedly, faced the same fate and then lodged a complaint at Dahisar police station.

Meanwhile, Khar Police have registered a case of cheating, impersonation of a public servant and criminal intimidation under IPC and IT Act. While no arrests have been made yet, police are investigating the matter.

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