Fake Aadhaar IDs to get confirmed berths

Fake Aadhaar cards may be one of the reasons why most passengers today find it difficult to get confirmed berths on trains. Touts are cornering tickets under real Aadhaar cards by using details like name and age, and then making these IDs fake by superimposing pictures of prospective passengers, who then travel on altered identities.
This is how it works: A pas senger who approaches a tout for a confirmed berth is asked for his photograph. Using it, the tout issues a fake Aadhaar ID, which bears the name under which a berth was booked.Ticket checkers usually do not have the means to ascertain if an Aadhaar card is genuine, and the touts use this to their advantage.

The scam came to light after an anti-fraud team scanned the QR (quick response) code (the square image on an Aadhaar card) of an ID in a suspected case with the help of a cellphone app. According to the team, 50 such cases were detected during random checks in just two months (April and May), that too in just one division (Mumbai) of the Central Railway . Cases of cheating (section 420 of the IPC) have been registered against not only touts, but also passengers.

As a rule, the railways demand ID proof to weed out fake tickets. But then, as is evident, touts have managed to circumvent the restriction. As soon as the booking date comes for a train, they buy several tickets, secure in the knowledge that would-be passengers who approach them will be furnished with assumed identities. “Passengers willing to pay hefty premiums and willing to take the risk of traveling on a fake document are the customers of these fraudsters,“ said a senior CR official. “The fraud came to light after a tip-off from informers. The 50 known fraud cases were detected during random checks. So, it is likely that the scam is being carried out on a massive scale.“

The anti-fraud team was led by Pramod Kadam and comprised Dinesh Mane and Sunil Kurne. The railways are now wondering how to tackle the latest volley by touts.