Cheating probe leads police to Rashtrapati Bhavan staffers

Mahender Singh Manral
According to the chargesheet, two of the accused, who were multi-tasking staffers, had posed as joint secretaries to dupe people.

A police probe into a cheating case involving three Rashtrapati Bhavan staffers and a head constable has revealed that at least three of the 22 people duped on the pretext of a job were interviewed by the accused at a guesthouse inside the President’s official residence last year.

According to the chargesheet, two of the accused, who were multi-tasking staffers, had posed as joint secretaries to dupe people. Police identified the accused as Moti Lal (36), who worked as a butler at the premises since 2006; staffers Monu Vaid (24) and Rahul Mishra; and Harender Singh, posted with the VIP security unit headquarters of Delhi Police last year. The four were arrested after the case came to light.

“The incident came to light after the President’s personal office staff received complaints of a fake job racket being operated by Rashtrapati Bhavan staffers. The arrest was made after one Satish Kumar lodged an FIR with South Avenue police station, alleging that his son, nephew and 17 others were promised jobs at the President’s official residence and allegedly cheated by the staffers,” said a senior police officer.

The case was transferred to the Crime Branch’s Inter-State Cell and the chargesheet was filed before a Delhi court a few days ago. “Lal told police that he met Vaid, who earlier worked at Gujarat Bhawan before getting a job as an MTS staffer at Rashtrapati Bhavan. Vaid was working at the Peacock guesthouse, while Mishra was working at guesthouse number 2. They all met Singh when he was posted at Rashtrapati Bhavan in a security unit. Vaid hatched the plan and with the help of his friend, posted at the Defence Research and Development Organisation Bhawan, they would dupe aspirants wanting an MTS job — taking Rs 8 lakh per candidate. Mishra, who has a BCom degree from Delhi University, is fluent in English, so they convinced him to be part of the gang,” the police chargesheet claims.

Police claimed the complainant approached the gang with Singh’s help, and they assured jobs for his son and nephew. Others approached them as well, and they allegedly took Rs 30 lakh from them. “They told the complaint they would take Rs 4 lakh in advance and Rs 4 lakh after the candidate gets the job. Three persons, including Kumar’s son Vivek Chaudhary, received a letter on May 22 last year to come for an interview on May 31. They entered Rashtrapati Bhavan from gate 17 in a private vehicle; Lal was sitting with them. Their interview was conduced at guesthouse number 2, where Vaid and Mishra were sitting, dressed in formals,” the chargesheet further claims.

The investigation team, led by DCP (Crime) Rajesh Deo, found that after the interview, Lal allegedly took the three job aspirants to the President Estate Dispensary for a “medical examination”. “They gave them ‘appointment letters’ on December 18 and asked to join on March 23 this year. The matter was exposed after Kumar’s son went to join his posting, only to be told by security personnel that the letter was forged,” said an officer.