Pune: Pay-and-park staffers held in extortion case | Pune News

PUNE: The crime branch of the city police on Saturday arrested two employees of a Pune Cantonment Board (PCB) contractor and booked two others on the charge of extorting money from a woman lawyer by way of collecting parking fees even though she did not park her vehicle opposite the Poona College, earmarked as a pay-and-park space.
The incident occurred on October 14. The arrested include criminal on police record Sunny Mhetre (32) from Bhavani Peth and his accomplice Sagar Baggan (33) from Lohegaon. A first information report (FIR) relating to extortion was registered by lawyer Seemin Shaikh (35) from Bhagyodayanagar in Kondhwa.
Seemin told TOI, “Four men blocked the access roads leading to two housing societies passing via the defence land and converted them into pay-n-park scheme by installing barricades.”
“On October 14, I removed my bike parked in the parking lot of one of the societies where I run a shop. The suspects blocked my way by putting a barricade in front of my vehicle and demanded parking fees,” she said.
“I refused to pay the parking fee because I did not park my bike in the pay-n-park scheme, but the suspects threatened me with dire consequences. They also threatened to vandalise my vehicle and snatched Rs200 from my hand and then only allowed me to go. I registered an FIR relating to extortion, wrongful restraint among other charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code because the suspects are in the habit of harassing and extorting money from residents of housing societies and others,” she added.
Sub-inspector Sanjay Gaikwad from crime branch (unit I) said, “We have arrested Mhetre and Baggan following a tip-off and transferred their custody to the Cantonment police station for further action.”
Senior inspector Ashok Kadam from Cantonment police said on Saturday, “A preliminary inquiry conducted before registering the FIR revealed that the PCB contractor’s employees were blocking access roads leading to the housing societies and were forcing residents to pay parking fee, which is wrong in the eyes of law. Two suspects on the run will be arrested at the earliest.”
The Pune Cantonment Board’s chief executive officer Amit Kumar told TOI, “The land belonging to the defence estate office, Pune circle, was handed over to the Pune Cantonment Board for running a pay-n-park scheme. I will collect details about the incident and take a call on taking action against our contractor.”

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