ANDHRA PRADESH

Cyber police to probe Infonet secret cam case

Ramesh Susarla

The case is related to shooting of indecent acts at cyber cafe

The original case was booked on February 23`Rules for conduct of cyber cafés yet to be approved

GUNTUR: The case related to picturing of indecent acts at Guntur Infonet Cyber Café through a secret camera will be transferred to Cyber Crimes Police Station at Hyderabad with the video clippings getting into several websites all over the world.

Guntur Superintendent of Police B. Shivadhar Reddy said that the original case was registered on February 23 and owner of the Cyber Café Rafi was arrested for trying to blackmail a girl, whom he had allegedly filmed. He, however, came out on bail and now alleges he had not made compact discs as everything was seized by the police.

Last week someone put it on the YouTube website, which spread like wildfire. "In view of the technical know-how needed to deal with this new angle in the cyber world, the case is being transferred to Cyber Crime Police Station," he added.

When contacted, Cyber Crimes SP Sivananda Reddy told The Hindu that it had framed a set of `Rules' for the running of a cyber café, but it had been pending with the Government for the past one and a half years. "The Internet café cubicle was turning a cheap mode for spending an hour of privacy. To reduce that we had suggested transparent partitions beyond a height of four feet, maintaining a log book of visitors, making production of photo identity cards compulsory, to cancel the municipal licence if found guilty, levying heavy monetary penalty," he said.

Now they would be punished under section 67 (8) of IT Act that provides for a penalty of Rs.5 lakhs to Rs.10 lakhs. Meanwhile, while one of the girls believed to be relative of a public figure in Guntur was sent to United States once the CDs were seized by the police, a student of a local college prominently seen in the clippings committed suicide and yet another attempted suicide.

"We are looking at these teenagers as victims of cyber crime and trying to pin down the source of circulation of CDs and transmission of clippings onto the websites," Mr. Shivadhar Reddy said. All these clippings were taken prior to August 2006.

"The police will call for a meeting of all stakeholders to form an interim panel that could suggest some kind of self-regulatory system to stop such kind of offences," he added. The police were daily picking up some people to probe into the case.

Chance detection

It was a chance detection of the secret camera in the Cyber Café by a student while he wanted to recharge his mobile at the Infonet and tried to insert his three-pin charger into the power point behind the computer monitor.

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