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Delhi businessman held for abusing politicians through SMS

April 16, 2010 23:45 IST

A businessman was arrested in New Delhi on Friday for allegedly sending "threatening" and "filthy" text messages to politicians, including Union Minister Shashi Tharoor, using SIM cards procured in someone else's name.

Narender Khosla (27), a manpower supplier, allegedly used documents of a gym instructor Manick Verma to procure the SIM cards and sent text messages with an aim to cause trouble to the latter with whom he had a personal rivalry.

Rashid Alvi, a Congress MP who also received the "dirty" text message and filed a complaint with Tughlaq Road police station, told PTI that a senior Delhi Police official called him at around 10 pm and informed him about the arrest.

According to sources, Khosla, who resides in the Rajendra Nagar locality, was allegedly angry with Verma for having an affair with a woman in whom he also was interested. Khosla is married.

Investigations have revealed that one of the two connections procured using the documents of Verma was later transferred to another name using different set of identification papers.

Police also found that the SIM cards were procured from two different shops in Karol Bagh on April 3 and April 7.

Investigators had earlier found that documents in the name of Verma were used by an unknown person to procure a SIM card from which "malicious" and "threatening" messages were sent to Tharoor and others.

After finding out this, the police prepared the sketch of the suspect with the help of shopkeepers and showed it to Verma who said he knew the person. Following this, Khosla was detained and during questioning he "confessed" to the crime.

Around 100 text messages were sent to politicians, including Tharoor, from two mobile numbers procured using forged documents in the past fortnight.

Out of the 100 messages, around 40 were sent on April 13 and 14, including the ones to Tharoor, MPs Brinda Karat, Mehmood Masood Madani, Rashid Alvi, Om Prakash and Sandeep Dikshit, police sources said.

Verma was traced using the information given by mobile service provider following investigations about Tharoor's Officer on Special Duty (OSD) Jacob Joseph receiving an SMS two days ago claiming to be from the "henchmen" of Karachi-based underworld don Dawood Ibrahim. It threatened the Minister to stay out of IPL Kochi team or face death.

Police sources said Verma told investigators that a police team from Sonepat had come to his west Delhi residence recently in connection with a probe into a "filthy" SMS sent from the same number.

However, after questioning Verma, an instructor at the Constitution club gym, it emerged that he was not at fault and his documents were being misused.

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