The Mumbai police on Friday arrested four people for allegedly duping a housing society in suburban Kandivali by organising a coronavirus vaccination camp fraudulently in the name of a private hospital, PTI reported.
The Hiranandani Heritage Residents Welfare Association had sought an investigation into the matter. The vaccination camp was arranged by the housing complex on May 30 after around 390 residents paid Rs 4.56 lakh to the organisers.
But, residents found out later that the government’s CoWIN portal showed no record of their vaccination. Some residents also said that they received certificates of vaccination with different dates and names of different hospitals, such as Nanavati Hospital, Lifeline Hospital and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s Nesco Covid Care Centre.
Additional Commissioner of Police (North) Dilip Sawant said that besides the four accused, another person who procured vaccines has been detained at a railway station in Madhya Pradesh. “It has also come to light that the members of the racket had organised vaccination camps at nine other places,” Sawant added.
An official said that Mumbai’s civic body had not given permission to organise such a camp and no medical officer was present during the vaccination drive. “It also seems that the vaccine used in the camp was not sourced from authorised persons and no Covid-19 related norms were followed,” he added.
Mahendra Singh, the police believe, is the mastermind of the scam, according to The Times of India. The 39-year-old is among those who have been arrested. He has been a member of a medical association for the last 17 years.
An first information report under Indian Penal Code 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) has been filed. Relevant sections of the IT Act and Epidemic Diseases Act have also been invoked against the accused.