UP man held for harassing 370 women through WhatsApp calls

Ballia (Uttar Pradesh), Jun 25 (IANS): A 35-year-old man, resident of Ballia district, has been arrested by a team of women power line (WPL) 1090 for allegedly making obscene video calls to 370 women across 15 districts and blackmailing them.

The accused, Shiv Kumar Verma, a graduate, has been arrested from his stationary shop in the Garhwar police station area of Ballia.

Police officials said that Verma used seven mobile phones, each with different numbers, to harass women. He used to later destroy the SIM cards and handsets.

The police said he would type random numbers and check their registration on the 'True Caller' app. He then would save the numbers registered in the name of women and make video calls via WhatsApp during odd hours, police said.

"He used to undress and start a conversation using a video screen recorder. Before the women could understand and snap the call, he used to shoot it. Women who used to snap the call were harassed repeatedly. Those who said they would complain were blackmailed that the screen video recording would be sent to their in-laws and husband. As a result, many victims did not report the matter to any authority and changed their phone numbers," said the officer.

A complaint against Verma was first received from Lucknow in February 2020.

"Verma was counselled by WPL 1090 multiple times but he did not mend his ways," said the officer.

He has been booked under the charges of singing, reciting, uttering obscene words, stalking, dishonesty, forgery, fraudulently and dishonestly using any genuine document and criminal intimidation.

Additional Director General of Police, 1090 WPL, Neera Rawat said more girls and women under distress should avail the service by calling 1090.

"We are continuously helping them on social media by making them aware and also acting tough against those stalking and harassing them," she said.



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