Indian Police uncover Mass Wedding Fraud Operation

Police in Uttar Pradesh uncovered a mass wedding fraud operation after a video from the ceremony went viral.

Indian Police uncover Mass Wedding Fraud Operation f

"They said that they will give me money."

Uttar Pradesh police arrested 15 people at a mass wedding function after it turned out it was a fraud operation.

Two government officials were also arrested.

The scam came to light when a video showing brides garlanding themselves went viral.

The footage also showed some men dressed as grooms with their faces concealed.

Reportedly, the community wedding took place on January 25, 2024, in the state’s Ballia district.

According to the authorities, approximately 568 couples took part in the mass wedding event.

However, it was later revealed that several individuals were paid to act as brides and grooms.

One local claimed men and women were paid between Rs. 500 (£4.70) and Rs. 2,000 (£19) to pose as brides and grooms.

Vimal Kumar said: “Some women had no one. They were wearing the varmala (garland) themselves. We came to know that people are being paid between Rs. 500 to Rs. 2,000.”

Meanwhile, 19-year-old Raj Kumar said he was offered money to pose as a groom.

He alleged: “I went there to see the wedding. They made me sit there. They said that they will give me money. Many were being made to sit.”

BJP MLA Ketki Singh was the chief guest at the community wedding.

Speaking about the fraudulent wedding event, Mr Singh said:

“They informed me just two days before the event. I had suspected there was something fishy. But now a complete investigation is being done.”

According to the government website, the government offers Rs. 51,000 (£490), paying Rs. 35,000 (£330) to the bride, Rs. 10,000 (£95) for purchasing wedding materials and Rs. 6,000 (£57) for the event.

Officials said the scam was unearthed before any money could be transferred to the fraudsters.

An official said: “We immediately formed a three-member committee to investigate the matter and verify all the beneficiaries.

“Till the time the complete investigation is not done, no benefits will be transferred to beneficiaries.”

As per the filed report, ineligible applicants had illegally applied to get benefits under the scheme by hiding the facts.

Police said the FIR was registered against the assistant development officer of the Social Welfare department and eight beneficiaries on charges of fraud in the Chief Minister’s Mass Marriage Scheme.

Ballia District Magistrate (DM) Ravindra Kumar said two assistant development officers – Sunil Kumar Yadav and Bhanu Pratap of the Social Welfare department – were arrested.

Others who were arrested included Ravindra Gupta, Alok Srivastav, Upendra Yadav, Deepak Chauhan, Mukesh Kumar Gupta, Ramji Chauhan, Santosh Yadav, Arjun Verma, Ramnath, Acchelal Verma, Dharmendra Yadav, Gulab Yadav and Sarabjeet Singh of the Social Welfare department.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

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