Mumbai: Three persons, including a tuition teacher, have been arrested for allegedly touching minors and women inappropriately in public places and using obscene language on the pretext of shooting “prank videos”, police said on Saturday.
The trio allegedly uploaded these videos on social media and video-sharing websites and earned at least Rs 2 crore during the COVID-19-induced lockdown with revenue generated from the sites and advertisements, an official said.
The cyber police station received a complaint that some men were shooting videos of women and minors, in which male characters touch them inappropriately and use obscene language, joint commissioner of police (Crime) Milind Bharambe said.
The victims in these videos lodged a complaint against the accused and accordingly, an FIR was registered against them, he said.
The accused were operating at least 17 Youtube channels and Facebook pages, where the videos were uploaded, the official said, adding that after the FIR was registered, the Mumbai police have initiated correspondence with Youtube to shut those channels.
According to the police, the main accused Mukesh Gupta (29), a resident of Thane, and his aides Prince Kumar Sav (23) and Jitendra Gupta (25) had shot and uploaded at least 300 obscene videos.
Most of the videos were shot on mobile phones during the lockdown at public places in Marine Lines, Bandra, Fort, Aksa, Gorai, Juhu beach, Balaji Garden and Kandivali, an official said.
The main accused Mukesh Gupta was a Class 10 topper in 2008 and runs a tuition class, where he teaches around 300 students, he said.
The police probing whether the accused had used his minor students to make the videos, he said.
At least four mobile phones, five laptops and one camera have been seized from the accused persons, he said.
An offence under sections of the IPC, Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, Information Technology Act and Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act has been registered against the accused persons, the official said.