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Kandivali Vaccination Fraud: BMC Says Camp Held Illegally; Mumbai Police Arrest 4

(Representational Photo: Shutterstock)

(Representational Photo: Shutterstock)

Mumbai police have arrested four persons for allegedly duping people by organising a COVID-19 vaccination camp fraudulently in the name of a private hospital.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has said that the vaccination camp organised at a housing society in suburban Kandivali in Mumbai had not sought its permission and no medical officer was present during the drive. A report in the matter was submitted to the municipal administration by Deputy Commissioner (Zone 7) Vishwas Shankarwar. According to the report, it is clear that the entire vaccination was done illegally.

Commenting on the issue, Maharashtra Minister Aaditya Thackeray said, “Let police conduct a probe. Housing societies should take NOCs from BMC. It’s on private housing societies and government to ensure that vaccination teams that are coming are legitimate."

The Mumbai police have arrested four persons for allegedly duping people by organising a COVID-19 vaccination camp fraudulently in the name of a private hospital. The arrested accused includes a male organiser of the vaccination camp, and other persons, who had issued fake vaccination certificates after obtaining personal data of the vaccinated members.

In a complaint submitted to the police, the Hiranandani Heritage Residents Welfare Association (HHRWA) had said that a vaccination camp was arranged by the residential complex on May 30. But later it found that the Co-WIN portal did not have any record of the people who participated and they received certificates in the name of different hospitals. The members had also expressed fears that the vaccine administered could be spurious.

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Besides the four arrested, one more person, who had procured vaccines for the camp has been detained at a railway station in Madhya Pradesh and a team of Mumbai police bringing him to the city, Additional Commisioner of Police (North) Dilip Sawant said. It has also come to light that the members of the racket had organised vaccination camps at nine other places, he said, adding that the investigation into it is on. According to another official, the incident had come to light after around 390 residents of the housing society located on S V Road got the certificates of three different organizations for getting the jabs through Co-WIN app.

The vaccination camp was organised at the club house of the society on May 30 and each member had paid Rs 1,260 per vaccine, he said, adding that the society had collectively paid a total of Rs 4.56 lakh to the camp organisers. When the vaccinated members asked for vaccination certificate, the organiser sought details of the members. However, after getting certificates of three different organisations, a society member, who was one of the participants of the drive, approached Kandivali police station and filed a complaint against the organisers, the official said.

The complaint said that the organisers gave vaccines to the members from the vials whose seals were already removed, he said. Based on the complaint, an FIR under sections 268 (public nuisance), 270 (malignant act which is likely to spread infection of any disease dangerous to life), 274 (adulteration of drugs), 275 (sale of adulterated drugs), 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating), 465 (forgery) and others, as well as relevant sections of IT Act and Epidemic Diseases Act, was registered, he said.

Mumbai College Complains of Vaccine scam

In another incident, a Mumbai College on Saturday claimed it may have been cheated in a vaccination drive on it campus, conducted by an event management company earlier this month. According to the Aditya College, Borivali west, one Rajesh Pandey, who reportedly posed as an event company head and chief manager of sales for the reputed Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, had conducted the vaccination camp in the college on June 3.

However, the KDAH has already denied its involvement in such camps while the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has issued warnings to all people to beware of scamsters taking advantage of the situation.

(With inputs from PTI, IANS)

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