Maharashtra: Illegal call center busted in Thane; one held
A call center operating illegally in Mumbra township in Thane district of Maharashtra and providing services to two US-based pharma companies, was busted and its owner was arrested, police said today.
The accused, identified as Abdul Vashid Kadir Chowdhary (23), was arrested following a raid on the call center located at Amrut Nagar locality in Mumbra yesterday morning.
Maharashtra: Illegal call center busted; one held
Raid was carried after police received a tip-off
Senior inspector of Mumbra police station, Kishore Pasalkar, said the police had received a tip-off that the call center was being run without permission.
Thane Police Commissioner Vivek Phansalkar then directed the Mumbra police to act and the raid was carried out around 6 am yesterday, he said.
During the raid, Chowdhary was found directing and guiding three persons, who were making calls.
Calls were made through Voice over Internet Protocol
"It was found that the calls were being made through Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), a technology that allows a person to make voice calls using an Internet connection instead of a regular phone line," Pasalkar said.
The three callers told the police that they had been appointed on a monthly salary of Rs. 12,000 for making calls, for which they had received training.
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Calls were made to Americans on behalf of medical companies
"The call-center executives used to call US-based citizens and ask them if they had pain in their back, knees or other parts. They made calls on behalf of the two US-based medical companies," Pasalkar said.
Once the persons told them about their pain, the callers used to seek their personal details, like age, location, saying they would get a free belt from the company.
Accused, an agent of US companies, got commission from them
The callers used to pass on the information to the two US-based companies, which would then provide the belts to the beneficiaries and get the payment through medical insurance, Pasalkar said.
"This call center was operating illegally for years and the arrested accused told the police that he was an agent of the US companies and got a commission from them," he said.
Police seized accessories worth Rs. 1 lakh from the accused
The police have seized several accessories including a monitor and a CPU, collectively valued over Rs. 1.13 lakh. Chowdhary has been charged under IPC Section 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) and different sections of the Indian Telegraph Act. Further investigation is on.