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Hijack Warning Was Sent by Man who Wanted to Avoid Goa Trip with Girlfriend
File photo of the Mumbai airport. (Getty Images)
Hyderabad: This week’s synchronised hijack threat on major Indian airports has turned out to be a hoax with a Hyderabad man telling the police he pulled it off to cancel a pleasure trip with his girlfriend.
Police said Vamshi Chowdhary, a transport agent, was facing financial problems and wanted to cancel his trip to Mumbai and Goa with his girlfriend. What Chowdhary did to achieve this led to panic in the Indian security establishment as the 32-year-old purportedly sent a hoax mail warning of simultaneous hijack attempts at Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad airports.
The email was found to have been generated from Hyderabad. A task force team, with the help of cyber experts, traced the IP address to a local cafe in SR Nagar area leading to Chowdhary’s arrest.
“His girlfriend stays in Chennai. She proposed a trip to Mumbai and Goa. He requested his girlfriend to cancel the trip but she declined. As he was facing financial problems, he hatched this plan to make her believe that flights have been cancelled because of high alert at the airports," said B Limba Reddy, DCP Task Force.
Police found Chowdhary was an accused in two cyber cases earlier as well. A case has been registered under 66D of IT Act and Sections 419 and 182 of IPC.
The mail received on April 16 had said, “A lady overheard six boys discussing a simultaneous hijack plan in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai.”
OP Singh, Director General of the CISF, which is tasked with securing all airports in the country, had said the email was received by the DCP in Mumbai.
“The email could well be a hoax, but we didn't take any chances. Embarkation (boarding) security increased, anti-contingency plan put in place and meeting of all stakeholders was held,” he had said then.
Following the mail, security protocols at these civilian air facilities was increased to the level that is done on Republic Day and the Independence Day, and CISF and police rushed to take special measures.