City cyber police has arrested three YouTubers for allegedly creating obscene and vulgar prank videos in public places in Mumbai. They would allegedly rope in young girls, including minors, under the pretext of shooting prank videos and offer them money. But during shooting, they would touch the girls inappropriately in public and molest them.
Based on the complaint of some of the girls, police arrested the trio — Mukesh Fulchand Gupta, 29; Prince Kumar Raju Sao, 23; and Jitendra Baichetram Gupta, 25. Mukesh is a Thane resident while other two are residents of Kurar.
City cyber police has arrested three YouTubers for allegedly creating obscene and vulgar prank videos in public places in Mumbai.
Milind Bharambhe, joint commissioner of police (crime), said the three accused would lure young girls and women to act in their prank videos for money. Thereafter, the accused would shoot the videos in public places such as Juhu beach, Gorai beach, Aksa beach, BMC gardens, etc. Under the pretext of shooting the prank videos, they would touch private parts of the girls and use vulgar language, the senior IPS officer said.
At least five girls, including a minor, have approached the police complaining that they were molested under the pretext of shooting prank videos. On the basis of their complaint, the police registered a criminal case against the accused and arrested them.
“The accused Mukesh, who secured 98.5% in 2008 SSC exams, is the main brain behind the obscene prank video racket. The other two used to assist him. Mukesh and his two aides were running more than 17 YouTube channels and Facebook pages. The group has earned about Rs 2 crore through these activities,” said Bharambe.
Rashmi Karandikar, deputy commissioner of police (cyber), said, “The group uploaded more than 300 such obscene prank videos which have over 150 million views on social media sites. Their channels and pages have more than 20 million subscribers.”
“The accused very well knew that obscenity and vulgarity attracts huge number of viewers on social media platforms, hence they were shooting obscene videos under the pretext of pranks videos. And for that, they exploited girls and made money,” said Nitin Jadhav, assistant inspector of cyber police station.
Some of the girls had requested the accused to take their videos down from internet, but the accused would extort money from them by threatening to defame them.
“ Mukesh takes tuitions of school kids. We are checking if he has targeted any girl students from the tuition class,” the DCP said.
“The accused have been booked under sections 292, 294, 509, 34 of Indian Penal Code, 67 and 67B of Information Technology Act, 8, 12 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act and Indecent Representation of Women’s (Prevention) Act for obscene act in public, molestation, molesting minor girls, using electronic devices to broadcast obscene content,” said inspector Mousami Patil of cyber police station who is investigating officer of the case.
“There are similar groups operating in Delhi and Jharkhand,” DCP Karandikar said.
Joint commissioner Bharambe appealed to citizens to keep an eye on their children and stop them from becoming part of such pranks videos so that they can be prevented from such abuse.
“We have written to YouTube and other social media service providers to take down the obscene videos from internet,” Bharambhe said.