The Mumbai police arrested 32-year-old Shanti Surendra Naik from Goa in connection with the OCI Scam. She was apparently involved in a fake marriage with the Canadian national who is supposed to be absconding.
According to the MID DAY report, the accused Shanti Naik, a resident of Goa was arrested by the police for fake marriage with a Canadian national who paid her Rs 1Lakh to engage in Fake Marriage.
Shanti was arrested in the Overseas Citizen Of India (OCI) card scam. According to the reports, this is a general practice wherein foreigners marry Indian nationals to secure permanent Indian visas, using falsified marriage documents, and exploiting poor women.
Naik had been on the run since 2021 after an FIR was registered against her and her fake Canadian national husband by the OCI wing of Mumbai Police’s special branch. Her fake husband is still absconding.
The police were on the lookout for Shanti and traced her location in Goa, later on, she was taken to Mumbai at Azad Maidan Police Station where the case was registered. The court granted the police two days of custody to investigate the matter. The FIR against Naik and her fake husband, Canadian national Daniel Harris Akler, was registered on August 4, 2021, in connection with the OCI scam.
The FIR also named another couple, Jyoti Krishna Vishe and her fake husband, UK national David John Lincoln, for engaging in a similar fake marriage to secure OCI. Both Vishe and Lincoln are still absconding.
Naik, who is currently in custody, has reportedly told the police that she was paid Rs 1 lakh to engage in a fake marriage with the Canadian national who is now absconding. Naik also claimed that the Canadian national promised to take her to Canada, but disappeared after securing the OCI. “We are currently searching for him, and it appears that he is currently somewhere in India,” an officer from Azaad Maidan Police stated.
The scam came to light in June 2021 when the OCI Unit of Mumbai Police’s Special Branch (II) booked a Russian national named Yuri Gubano for obtaining OCI on the basis of false marriage documents with an Indian national. “Upon taking cognizance of the case, senior officials ordered a thorough check of all OCI applications. During this process, two more couples were found to have used false documents to obtain OCI, and an FIR was filed with the Azad Maidan Police Station,” said an officer from the Special Branch.
Two applications for OCI by Daniel Harris Akler and David John Lincoln came under suspicion after they received their OCI cards in 2019. Further scrutiny of both applications revealed a significant age gap between the couples and that their Indian wives shared the same residential address in Sindhudurg. The officials then verified their marriage certificates from BMC and found them to be fake, resulting in a case being registered against them under various sections of the IPC including cheating and forgery.