On Thursday, Surat Police arrested a person who was allegedly part of a racket involved in trapping honey from a textile trader, then stealing Rs 10,000 and demanding Rs 2 lakh.
According to police, the incident came to light after the textile trader dropped a letter in a “suggestion box” in Umra region – an initiative of Surat Police Commissioner Ajay Kumar Tomar for the public shares information and suggestions with the police.
Four ‘suggestion boxes’ have been placed in the Umra region, as part of a pilot project, and the letter was found by Umra Police Inspector AH Rajput in the park box on Tuesday Joggers on City Light Road.
Police filed a complaint at Umra Police Station on Tuesday evening against KA Parmar, Rohit Patel, Kanak Singh, Jignesh Jivaliya and an unidentified person under ICC Sections 389 (extortion), 120(b) (association of malefactors) 170 (offense by servants), 323 (willfully causing harm).
Police say one of the gang members involved in the trader’s honey trap has been arrested, while the others, including a police chief from Surat City Police, are on the run.
Police said the textile trader, in his letter, claimed to have received a call on his mobile phone from a woman about 10 days ago.
The woman claimed that she wanted to buy sarees and clothing materials in large quantities. The shopkeeper asked her to come to her shop in Ring road, to which she told him to come to her house at Pooja Apartment, Ghoddod road on Tuesday, police said.
On Tuesday morning, the trader went to the woman’s house for some samples of sarees and clothes.
The trader alleged that the woman attempted to have a physical relationship with him, which he objected to. Meanwhile, a man dressed in a police uniform accompanied by four other people in civilian clothes entered the apartment and threatened the shopkeeper to charge him with a police case. They also threatened to upload his photos with the woman to social media.
According to the police, the gang then demanded Rs 5 lakh from the trader not to sue with the police. However, he agreed to pay Rs 2 lakh to settle the matter, police said.
The shopkeeper had asked the gang to collect the money from his friend’s jewelry store at the Navsari bazaar. However, when the gang members arrived at the store to collect some cash, they found it closed. The accused after collecting the trader’s address and robbed him of Rs 10,000 and asked him to pay the remaining amount of Rs 2 lakh over the weekend.
On Tuesday evening, the police went to the apartment with the complainant and caught Jignesh Jivaliya, a resident of Nanpura. Police said Jignesh released the names of other defendants identified as Jayesh Yadav who showed up at the scene in police uniform.
Umra Police Station Inspector AH Rajput said, “We have arrested one of the defendants in this case while others including the defendant identified as Sonu are on the run. The main accused of this gang is a Chief Police Officer Jayesh Yadav, who serves in Surat Police Headquarters… In such cases of honey trapping, the victim does not report directly to the police station, fearing that his identity is revealed. But he could contact us through the “suggestion box”.
Tomar said, “We have placed ‘suggestion boxes’ outside gardens, parks and educational institutions… They can also give us information about any criminal activity in their area… In the next few days, we will extend the “suggestion box” to other areas of the city…”