Petrol pump racket: Cheating chips found, 23 arrested

he UP Special Task Force made 23 arrests, including an electrician who claimed to have installed the chip-based device in over 1000 fuel stations across the state, and in other states too. The probe is expected to expand across UP.

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All seven petrol pumps were sealed and about 14 people were being questioned in this connection, assistant superintendent of police, STF, Arvind Chaturvedi said.

On a tip-off, STF sleuths picked up Rajendra, an electrician who used to install these chips in petrol dispensing machines which reduced the fuel output, he said.

“On his information, we carried out raids in seven petrol pumps and found that all of them were using the chip and making profits by saving petrol in every filling,” the ASP said.

Rajendra reportedly admitted to installing the chip in hundreds of refilling stations in the state capital and other districts, as well as other states.

Raids will also be carried out in other parts of the state as the STF has information that the chip has been sold to a large number of pumps, Chaturvedi added.

The chip when installed in the dispensing machines reduces the output by nearly 5-10%. It is attached by a wire which is linked to a remote control that sets the limit, the STF said. This means a customer will get only 940 ml petrol for the price of one litre.

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Up for sale in Kanpur and Delhi, the tech comes with a diagram that explains how to install it in the machine. While each chip costs around Rs 30,000 – 40,000, an electrician charges around Rs 5,000 – 10,000 for installation.

The remote control for activating the chip can operate upto a 100 metres radius, making it convenient for vendors to carry in theirs purses.

“On an average petrol pumps (at prime locations) used to earn Rs 12-15 lakh extra per month, and in a rural area or remotely located petrol pump would earn at least Rs 6-7 lakh extra by cheating consumers this way,” the SSP said.

The arrested electrician claimed that members of his gang had been installing the chip at petrol pumps for the past seven years, and that similar gangs were in the business too.