19 pumps charged for duping clientsThe Metropolitan Police Crime Division has raided 19 fuel stations in Kathmandu Valley which were found to be tampering with the meter and duping customers for around a year.
The Metropolitan Police Crime Division has raided 19 fuel stations in Kathmandu Valley which were found to be tampering with the meter and duping customers for around a year.
The MPCD made public 13 mechanics and petrol pump owners, including four Indian nationals, who had been using tricks to dispense less fuel than the volume read by the meter. In the process, they cheated customers 200 to 300 millilitre petrol or diesel on sale of every five litres.
On Tuesday, the MPCD raided two more refuelling centres in the Valley—Prabin Oil, Gatthaghar and Kamukhya Petrol Pump Koteshwor. Prabin Oil owner Prabin Shrestha is absconding while the charges against the Koteshwor-based owner are yet to be known.
The four Indians apparently brought in equipment such as remote controllers, receivers and switches and installed them at petrol pumps in Ekantakuna, Chapagaun and Balkumari in Lalitpur and Balaju, Chabahil and Samakhusi in Kathmandu.
Nashim Siddiqui, 44, of Bihar, India, who has worked as a technician with various fuel centres in Nepal for the past 25 years, is believed to be the mastermind. Police arrested Siddiqui and his team mates who helped the authorities figure out the pumps that had been cheating customers.
Other arrestees have been identified as Ayub Alam, 35, of Gorakhpur, India; Hamid Hussain ‘Mintu’, 25, and Mohammad Abrar of Bihar and Shek Imtiaj, 35, of Rautahat. They are all technicians abetting the pump owners in the heist.
Police identified the entrepreneurs as Sailendra Nath Bade, 40, of Gayatri Devi Oil Stores, Ekantakuna; Shiva Timilsina, 35, of Mahalaxmi Bishwokarma Traders, Chapagaun; Gopal Maharjan, 48, of Unique Fuel Centre, Balkumari; Yunus Pradhan, 34, of Tri-Shakti Fuel Centre, Sanepa; Kalyan Khadka, 47, of Crystal Fuel Suppliers, Balaju; Punyaram Bakhadeya, 49, of Bhaktapur Fuel Centre; and Sitaram Ghimire, 32, of New Bangalamukhi Oil Stores, Sano Bharyang.
Police are hunting for owners of four refuelling centres who are at large following the raid. They have been identified as Buddhi Ratna Maharjan and Dipak Thapaliya of Rajdhani Oil, Gopi Krishna; Amir Lama of New Pushpanjali Oil Traders, Jay Bageshwori; Rajiv Sharma of Puja Kothi Oil Store, New Bageshwori; Tilak Shrestha of Divya Suppliers, Samakhusi.
Five other filling stations have been sealed and are under watch, said the MPCD, without disclosing their names. SSP Sarbendra Khanal, chief of the police division, said the technicians would install chips to be used by the owners to control fuel flow remotely. “The devices used in manual pumps could be removed by the owners themselves while digital dispensers needed technicians for installing and removing them,” said SSP Khanal.
The police were assisted by the Nepal Bureau of Standards and Metrology in the raid. SSP Khanal said the owners would be charged for cheating and black marketeering.