A high-profile honey-trap scandal that had taken the Madhya Pradesh politics by storm in the second half of the year 2019 is back in the news helming the affairs in the State.
It all started days ago when speaking about his former minister Umang Singhar beleaguered in the controversial death of his female friend, MPCC President Kamal Nath had referred to the scandal saying he never indulged in politics of blackmailing even as the investigators had shown him the original CD of the scam.
Singhar’s female friend had hanged herself at his residence in Bhopal recently and police had hurriedly booked him over abetment of suicide during the initial probe. The Congress party had alleged political vendetta. It was widely seen as arm-twisting by Congress to save its former minister from legal hassles.
BJP through Medical Education Minister Vishwas Sarang had assaulted the septuagenarian Congress leader accusing him of blackmail. Sarang on Sunday had questioned why Nath hid the evidence, seeking an FIR against him.
Special Investigation Team reportedly has served a notice to Nath for questioning him on June 2 in this regard. Nath, however, in his Morena trip on Sunday denied he has the pen-drive saying ‘you people (media) has it’.
The MP Congress has also slammed the SIT letter saying it has been issued by a responsible Station-in-Charge but without any date, dispatch number or any seal.
How the scandal unfolded
The lid on the major scandal was blown off after the Indore Municipal Corporation city engineer Harbhajan Singh had approached the police in Indore in September 2019 that he was blackmailed by some women with a sleaze CD. The police then laid a trap and arrested Shweta Vijay Jain, considered the mastermind of the racket, Shweta Swapnil Jain, Aarti Dayal, Barkha Soni and their driver Abhishek Thakur.
During the initial probe, it emerged that the gang had been honey-trapping politicians, senior bureaucrats, contractors and builders for a long. Soon after an SIT was formed into the matter. Raids at the residences of women engaged in the nexus had led to the recovery of huge cash, assets and electronic gadgets and devices which had ‘victims’ in compromising situation.
Then SIT chief had handed over a closed envelope to the High Court reportedly carrying 40 names in 2020.
The subsequent probe had revealed that the gang of women also engaged in human trafficking and pushed girls into the sleazy trade to mint money.
The gang targeted poor and middle-class girls and women and offered them jobs in NGOs and later pushed them into the honey-trapping crime after making them addicted to a luxurious lifestyle.
Through alluring pictures of the girls, the gang used to entrap victims and later record his acts through hidden cameras which were used to blackmail them later. Some journalists also were engaged in the nexus who used to recover money from the victims later on as mediators.
The gang also got contracts, projects and transfer posting done besides recovering money from the victims. Driver Abhishek who worked in Shweta Vijay Jain’s factory also was involved in their misdeeds and helped them prepare fake IDs of the girls employed by the gang.
Aarti Dayal who herself was entrapped by the gang in the past worked as a handler for them taking care of the girls arranging for their food, shelter and other requirements and also prepared them to take a plunge into this sleazy business.
Those arrested in the case are in Indore central jail while the probe hasn’t led anywhere especially on exposure of those entrapped by the women.