Cylinders sold on the black market: pair held


DELHI Police said two paramedics were arrested for their alleged involvemen­t in the black market sale of oxygen cylinders.

Police also recovered Rs 1 lakh (100 000 rupees, just over R19 000) from them.

Atul Kumar Thakur, deputy commission­er of police, said police received a call on May 6 about oxygen cylinders being sold at exorbitant prices.

Police contacted the complainan­t, who said a person posted a message on social media, regarding the supply of oxygen cylinders for patients suffering from Covid-19.

“However, when she contacted the number, the person demanded Rs 90 000 (just over R17 000) for a 50-litre oxygen cylinder,” Thakur said.

A first incident report was registered and a team set up to arrest the culprits.

Thakur said technical surveillan­ce was mounted and local intelligen­ce were brought into the investigat­ion.

“After sincere efforts, Pawan, 21, a resident of Dakshinpur­i, was apprehende­d and a cellphone found in his possession,” Thakur said, adding that Pawan initially denied his involvemen­t in any dealing in oxygen cylinders.

But, during interrogat­ion, he revealed that for the past two years he had been working as a paramedic.

“The medical background of Pawan raised alarm in the minds of the investigat­ion team, and the team got suspicious. Pawan’s cellphone was scanned and various clues discovered.

“It was found that many people had contacted Pawan, especially on his WhatsApp, for oxygen cylinders and that he was charging Rs 40 000 (more than R7 600) for a 15-litre cylinder and Rs 90 000 (just over R17 000) for 50-litre cylinders,” he said.

Thakur said police checked Pawan’s Paytm app (a payment applicatio­n) and found he had received a huge amount of money on his Paytm account, which was then transferre­d to his savings account, and finally withdrawn by him.

Explaining the modus operandi, Thakur said: “Pawan is a trained paramedic. The oxygen cylinders were being issued to ambulances for transporti­ng critically ill-patients.

He managed to get his cellphone number publicised on Instagram to supply oxygen cylinders.

He started misappropr­iating oxygen cylinders being issued for ambulances.

“He used to receive the amount on his Paytm account, which was transferre­d to his two saving accounts and later the amount was withdrawn,” he said.

Thakur said Pawan was helped by Vipin Nagar and Rohit Nagar, paramedics at different stations, who were allegedly involved in arranging oxygen cylinders. During the investigat­ion, a raid was conducted at Pawan’s warehouse.

Two oxygen cylinders (one 50-litre and one 15-litre), 32 PPE kits, and Rs 1 lakh in cash was recovered from his house. Nagar was also arrested. |

 ?? IANS ?? POLICE arrested two paramedics for the sale of oxygen cylinders. |
IANS POLICE arrested two paramedics for the sale of oxygen cylinders. |

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