Note swap racket still thrives

Note swap racket still thrives

Nearly seven months after the Centre banned 500- and 1,000-rupee notes, people are still found to be exchanging scrapped notes in the city using the special provision extended to NRIs.

Police raided five places since Monday night and seized demonetised notes worth Rs 5.77 crore and arrested 15 people. The raids were conducted hours after the Cubbon Park police arrested five men, including four from Tamil Nadu, and seized Rs 2.5 crore from them in a hotel on Church Street on Monday afternoon.

The probe so far indicates that a network is still active in the city to exchange the notes for industrialists in Chennai and other cities of Tamil Nadu.

The Basavanagudi police arrested Iqbal Mohammad, Rajesh and Ravindranath and seized Rs 2.15 crore from them. Rajesh and Ravindranath are employees of an outsourced agency of a leading bank. Mohammad, a realtor from Mangaluru, had  come to the city for exchanging the notes. They were discussing the exchange at SLV Hotel in Basavanagudi when police raided them. But Iqbal’s friend Ramesh managed to flee from the hotel.

In another raid near PES College, police arrested Sadashiva and Harsha and seized Rs 1.12 crore in scrapped notes. They were waiting for their friend Raju at whose behest they had arranged the notes for a 20% commission.

In a separate raid near National Cooperative Bank in Gandhi Bazaar, police arrested Raghunandan, an FDA with the Health and Family Welfare Department, and Suresh, a resident of JP Nagar, and seized Rs 50 lakh in banned notes. Raghunandan was in touch with his friend Chinnegowda for the exchange.

In another raid near Brigade Millenium apartments in Puttenahalli, police arrested V Murali, a resident of Vijayanagar, Balaji, Shafique Ahmed and Manjunath, from Vyalikaval, and seized Rs 1 crore in scrapped notes. The suspects had stashed the notes in a car.

In Puttenahalli, police arrested four people and seized Rs 1 crore in banned notes.

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