With no money to spend on a holiday trip with his girlfriend, M Vamsi Krishna sent fake tickets to her and then attempted to save face by sending an e-mail to Mumbai police warning of a possible plane hijack but the plan landed him in the police net.
Krishna, a 32-year-old transport agent in Miyapur area, had sent fake flight tickets to his girlfriend, who wanted to go on a holiday to Mumbai and Goa, due to financial problems.
He thought that if the flights were cancelled due to the hijack threat, she would cancel her trip which would save him embarrassment.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Task Force) B Limba Reddy alleged that the e-mail was sent by Krishna, who posed as a woman, claiming that a group of 23 people were going to hijack aircraft from Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai airports. It prompted Mumbai police to alert security agencies at the three airports.
The CISF also pressed into service its ‘Quick Reaction Commando’ teams to undertake a sanitising drill at the airports and all airlines were asked to remain extra vigilant, Reddy said.
“As the e-mail was generated from Hyderabad, the Hyderabad Police Commissioner issued instructions to check the veracity of the e-mail. We traced the IP address and found that Krishna sent it from an internet cafe in SR Nagar,” the DCP said.
The accused told police that his Chennai-based girlfriend had proposed a trip to Mumbai and Goa. Vamsi was facing financial problems and was unable to meet the expenses for the tour.
He requested her to cancel the trip but she did not relent, Reddy said.
In a bid to cancel the trip, he hatched a plan to make her believe that flights had been cancelled because of ‘high alert’ at the airports, he said.
He created a fake ticket in his girlfriend’s name for an April 16 flight from Chennai to Mumbai and e-mailed it to her.
Later, he went to an internet cafe and created an e-mail address, which he used to send the threat email to Mumbai Police Commissioner and others, the police officer said.
A case has been registered against Vamsi under relevant sections of the Information Technology Act and also under Indian Penal Code sections dealing with ‘cheating by impersonation, and threat of injury to public servant’, he said.
Vamsi told police that he had in the past extorted Rs 20,000 from a brothel in 2010 and duped a woman of Rs 6 lakh under the pretext of ‘matrimonial alliance’ in 2013.
IMAGE: Security was beefed up at airports in Chennai, Mumbai and Hyderabad following threats of hijack attempt. Photograph: R Senthil Kumar/PTI Photo