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Gurugram: Man arrested for driving SUV with number plate of another car

Hindustan Times logo Hindustan Times 3 days ago Leena Dhankar, Gurugram
Gurgaon, India- November 17: Used car on display at a shop at old Delhi road in Gurgaon. The ban on 15-year-old petrol and 10-year-old diesel commercial vehicles from plying on roads in Haryana has also created ripples among the car owners in the city as they are either selling their vehicles or changing the number plates to other state, anticipating action on private vehicles, in Gurgaon, India, on Thursday, 17 November 2016. (Photo by Parveen Kumar/Hindustan Times) © Provided by Hindustan Times Gurgaon, India- November 17: Used car on display at a shop at old Delhi road in Gurgaon. The ban on 15-year-old petrol and 10-year-old diesel commercial vehicles from plying on roads in Haryana has also created ripples among the car owners in the city as they are either selling their vehicles or changing the number plates to other state, anticipating action on private vehicles, in Gurgaon, India, on Thursday, 17 November 2016. (Photo by Parveen Kumar/Hindustan Times)

A 32-year-old owner of an automobile workshop was arrested on Friday for allegedly replacing the registration number plate of his SUV with that of another vehicle, which he had sold to a resident of Palwal last year.

Police said last December, Rajesh Sarot, the Palwal resident, received three challans for jumping signal and not wearing seat belt while driving.

Sarot, who registered a complaint, said he was shocked as he had not visited Gurugram during this period. “I went to the traffic police and brought the matter to the attention of the officer concerned. By then, I had already paid two challans without realising that someone else was using my SUV’s registration number,” he said.

Assistant commissioner of police Sanjeev Balhara said, “We showed him the CCTV footage of his car. He was shocked as someone else was driving the SUV, whose shape and colour was the same as his vehicle. We checked the records and found that the suspect had paid one challan. We took the picture of the suspect and showed it to the complainant, who identified him as Naresh Singh of Hisar.”

Balhara said they have a record of all the challans in their integrated command and control centre (ICCC) in Sector 44, where cameras linked to traffic signals detect violations. “We sent a team to the workshop in Wazirabad village and arrested the suspect from the spot. During questioning, he revealed that he had bought two Scorpio SUVs from Bangalore. While he sold one of the SUVs to the complainant, he kept the other one for himself. As there was tax pending and e-challans issued for his Scorpio, he replaced the number plate with the one he sold, after which he drove his SUV to the national capital and to different districts of Haryana,” he said.

Police said to evade e-challans for traffic violations, Singh allegedly used the registration number of Sarot’s vehicleto trick traffic cameras and authorities in Gurugram. Police said more than 10 challans were issued against the registration number on Singh’s vehicle. He had been using the fake registration plate for almost a year to avoid paying e-challans for traffic violations.

Balhara said they are investigating if Singh has violated serious traffic norms or has been involved in road accidents during this time. If found guilty, more sections will be added.

A case under sections 417 (punishment for cheating), 465 (punishment for forgery), 468 (forging document) and 471 (using forged document) of the IPC was registered against Singh at Sector 53 police station on Thursday.

Police said they have received 38 similar complaints from Panipat, Gurugram, Farrukhnagar, Nuh and Pataudi since January, 2021. The maximum cases are from Panipat.

Balhara said there are gangs using the same modus operandi, where in they attach the original number plates of vehicles obtained in other districts and states to stolen vehicles. “We have identified some suspects belonging to different gangs. The fake registration number plates were used for kidnapping, murder, attempt to murder, robbery and snatching cases. We are yet to arrest the suspects involved in such casesand have written to other districts and states regarding the same,” he said.

In April last year, Gurugram traffic police received similar complaints from Panipat and Faridabad.

A 38-year-old resident of Panipat received a challan for jumping red signal from Gurugram police in January andreceived another challan from the Delhi police in the last week of March. The victim who had never visited any of the cities met police alleging that they have wrongly sent challans to him. An investigation was carried out, during which it was found someone was using his Enfield Bullet’s registration number plate and had violated traffic rules and regulations 13 times in a span of three months.

“The victim was adamant and asked for proof. Police took CCTV footage from a few locations and showed him the clippings, after which it was clear that some unidentified person was using his registration number on a stolen motorbike since January 2021,” said Balhara.

After the incident came to the fore, police started receiving similar complaints and the registration number of 13 vehicles, such as Innova, Ciaz, Honda City, Corolla, and Eco Sport, were found in use by criminals to escape police action.

Commissioner of police K K Rao said their I-CCC is not only helping in recovering stolen vehicles but also tracking other vehicle-related crimes. “We have written to other districts to share if they have registered similar complaints. We have formed teams to arrest people involved in such cases,” he said.

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