Pune: Bus owner sends fake card, driver sneaks to terminal

PUNE: A minibus driver was arrested for sneaking into the Lohegaon airport terminal building to recover fare from a woman passenger using a fake ticket on Thursday evening.

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The driver, Sudhir Shinde (40), from Khadakwasala picked up a dispute with a woman over allegedly not paying the fare after the bus owner, Sumit Malsure (28), insisted that he collect the fare from her. He flashed a fake ticket of IndiGo to enter the airport through gate number 2. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel took him into custody around 4.40pm and found that the ticket was tampered with.

Malsure was also summoned for questioning. He and his employer were handed over to police late in the night. CISF inspector Manoj Rammurthy (43) lodged an FIR of cheating and forgery among other charges of the IPC and Maharashtra Police Act with the Airport police.

Senior inspector Rajendra Patil of Airport police said, “Shinde ferried eight passengers to the airport, but a woman did not pay the fare. He called Malsure and told him that she had entered the airport. Malsure sent a fake ticket to Shinde in the latter’s name through WhatsApp and instructed him to collect the fare from her. Shinde entered the airport showing the fake ticket and started searching for her. He panicked on seeing heavy CISF presence.”

Patil said, “The CISF staffers intercepted Shinde on suspicion when he was rushing out through the departure gate. The ticket he furnished was booked by another passenger. The verification of the PNR by an IndiGo official revealed it. Shinde’s entry inside the airport on a fake ticket is illegal.”

An airport official told TOI, “After the woman entered the terminal, Shinde got a call from Malsure stating that he should take Rs4,000 from her. His employer pressed him to recover the money. Malsure sent him a (fake) ticket of IndiGo bearing his (Shinde’s) name and Bengaluru as the destination.”

The official said the driver was let inside after his ticket was checked. “A CISF jawan near the departure gate smelled a rat as Shinde was not carrying any luggage. The CISF personnel questioned him and an IndiGo representative was called. Then it came to light that the ticket was of a Mumbai passenger, who had to travel to Muscat,” he said.

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