Chennai

Gang cheating people under pretext of doing exorcism busted

The Washermenpet police busted a gang which cheated several persons under the pretext of performing special exorcism poojas. Four suspects, including two women, were arrested and a search is still on to nab the prime accused, a self-styled godman from Tiruvallur district.

The police identified those arrested as Amarnath, 24, of Kasimedu; Suresh, 34, of Arakkonam; Jayanthi, 29, of Kodungaiyur; and Pappa, 54, of Madurai.

A special team led by Julius Caesar, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Washermenpet, began investigations after the owner of a mini-truck from Tenkasi complained that a gang had cheated him to the tune of ₹2 lakh by saying they would exorcise him of an evil spirit. K. Rajakumaran, 45, of Meenatchipuram in Tenkasi district, recently met a man, who was pretending to be a godman, in his village. He said his family was in the grip of evil spirits and that he could ward them off for ₹2 lakh.

Mr. Rajakumaran sold his mini-truck for ₹5 lakh. He and his father-in-law arrived in Chennai with the promised amount. They were escorted by the self-styled godman and his associates in a car. The suspects took them near the Government Stanley Hospital, where they took the money and left claiming that they would buy the items for the ritual. But they never returned.

Mr. Rajakumaran lodged a complaint with the police. On scrutinising the call records of the suspects, the police identified the main suspect as Yuvaraj, 42, from Putlur, Tiruvallur. “He was in touch with another family in Velachery and intended to cheat them in a similar manner. Sensing trouble, he sent his associates to the house while he was waiting in a car. His associates were nabbed but Yuvaraj escaped,” a senior police officer said.

Explaining the modus operandi of the gang, the officer said, “The main suspect would deploy his associates to scout for potential victims in random villages. After his associates zero in on potential victims, the main suspect would offer help to solve their troubles by performing poojas. They seem to have cheated multiple people.”

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Printable version | Dec 1, 2020 12:00:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/gang-cheating-people-under-pretext-of-doing-exorcism-busted/article32938695.ece

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