How far would you go to avoid telling your girlfriend or boyfriend the truth about something?
Four days after security at three major international airports in the country was beefed up following a hijacking threat, the police found out that it had all been a hoax.
A man, identified as Vamshi Chowdhary (31) is said to have sent the hoax mail to three City Police Commissioners just to cancel a trip with his girlfriend.
“He has been talking to a woman from Chennai. The couple had a plan to go for a pleasure trip to Mumbai and Goa. However, Vamshi has been facing financial crisis,” said Limba Reddy, DCP Task force Hyderabad.
To avoid the trip, he sent mails from a fake account about simultaneous hijack attempts at Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad airports creating a panic. Security had been beefed up in all these airports following the threat.
“He did not want his girlfriend to know about his financial issues after she declined to cancel the plan. He told her that flights have been cancelled because of the high alert at the airports,” said the DCP.
He had earlier created a fake flight ticket for April 16 from Chennai to Mumbai and mailed it to her.
The Hyderabad police received information from the Mumbai Commissioner that the threat emails had been generated from Hyderabad.
With help from the Cyber police of Hyderabad, the Task Force team tracked down the IP address of the computer.
“The mail had been sent from a local internet cafe in SR Nagar. It was hard to identify initially as several people had used the computer. However, the cafe had CCTV cameras,” said Reddy.
After examining 15 people, including Vamshi, who used the computer on that day, the Task Force zeroed in on the accused.
After Vamshi confessed to his crime, the police also realised that he had a history of cyber crime.
“Few months ago, he had duped a woman on a matrimonial site. He took Rs. 6 lakh from the woman and promised to marry her,” the DCP added.
A case has been registered against Vamshi under Sections 182 (False information, with intent to cause public servant to use his lawful power to the injury of another person), and 419 (Punishment for cheating by impersonation) of the IPC and Section 66 D of the IT Act (Punishment for cheating by impersonation by using computer resource).
On April 16, a high alert was issued in three airports after the Mumbai police received an email stating that a woman had heard six unidentified youths discuss the hijacking of three flights in Hyderabad, Mumbai and Chennai on Sunday.
Mumbai Police then forwarded the mail to the Mumbai Airport Security Group which issued a high alert.
The mail also stated that 23 people would board flights in the three cities of Hyderabad,Chennai and Mumbai.