Lahore          -          Perhaps it was a jackpot for a poor senior clerk of water and sanitation agency of the provincial capital as he was being told that he had won big prizes in a TV show and he was about to become rich. But, it was not like that. He had never won.

Actually, the middle-aged government employee with a tiny salary each month and living in a rented house of a shabby neighbourhood was being allured by a gang of so far unidentified swindlers who were never a part of any prize show and had nothing to offer but, through their handsets, they had long been running an indigenously-developed network of different cellular phone networks for alluring people in the same way.

“One Syed Muhammad Zeeshan son of Muhammad Arshad called me through a cellular phone number 0348-0461910 and introducing himself supervisor of a TV network offered felicitations for my big success in their programme,” Zulfiqar Ali, the recent target of the gang of swindlers faking as some prize show’s management, said and revealed that he was told he was a winner of the lucky draw for 120 gram gold and Umra tickets while hefty cash prizes were also announced for him in the show. Later, one Syed haji Muhammad Bilal through cell phone 0342-0764979 called Zulfiqar and introducing himself as head supervisor of the company gave him assurances.

“The fake company’s representatives then started exploiting me and received tens of thousands of rupees on one of the other pretext like service charges, paperwork, tax fee, guaranty fee and many other heads,” an otherwise well aware considered government servant Zulfiqar Ali said while elaborating the typical methodology of such gangs whose number is unknown as authorities concerned seemed to have sunken into never-ending investigations of the similar frauds being carried out on the pretext of Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP).

The duped civil servant of the ordinary cadre got a fraud case registered under section 420-A with Shadman police station. The crime victim in his application presented many cellular phone numbers of the gang of swindlers and also produced evidence related to the money transfers.

“But, to my utter surprise, the phone numbers of these swindlers are still operational and they have called me even after the case registration,” Zulfiqar Ali said and in a meek voice complained that it was all his saving that he consumed for getting his so-called prizes.

The government servant robbed of his savings to the tune of 4,50,000 rupees has demanded of the government to make departments concerned work steadily on the case so that gangs involved in sending lucky draw win messages and calls to citizens.

Pertinent to mention here is that that tens of thousands of Pakistanis on a daily basis receive messages of these gangs of swindlers who up to now are closely estimated to have deprived at least hundreds of citizens of their hard-earned cash on the pretext of lucky draw win.

Missing SSP suspected of kidnapping friend

Lahore police have so far failed to provide any details regarding their SSP Mufakhar Adeel who had gone missing under mysterious circumstances many days ago as no clue has been made available to the SSP’s close friend Shahbaz Titla advocate who had also disappeared apparently in the same occurrence.

A residence the missing SSP had recently purchased in a posh neighbourhood of the provincial capital has however been located and area people are being made part of the investigations aimed at ascertaining the circumstances which might related with the happening.

A police source has revealed that Mufakhar Adeel was being suspected for his alleged involvement in the sudden disappearance of his friend and he had twice been called for investigations in this regard.

The spouse of Shahbaz Titla kept insisting to nominate SSP Mufakhar Adeel as possible kidnapper of her husband but the police registered the case against unidentified persons, the source said.