|Izazul after his arrest. Picture by Kuntal Chakrabarty
Feb. 1: Izazul Sheikh, the 28-year-old arrested from Salt Lake for allegedly siphoning Rs 10 lakh off former cricketer V.V.S. Laxman’s bank account in Hyderabad, could be part of an inter-state racket, police said today.
“Izazul is not the only one involved in the (cyber) crime. We have come to know that the fraudulent transaction was the handiwork of a racket. We are looking for Izazul’s associates,” C.V. Anand, the commissioner of Cyberabad metropolitan police, told The Telegraph.
A two-member police team from Cyberabad today took Izazul, who was picked up from a bank in Salt Lake yesterday, into custody. The Malda native was flown to Hyderabad after a Salt Lake court this morning allowed Cyberabad police a week’s transit remand.
One of the two visiting officers said Izazul would be produced in a Cyberabad court tomorrow.
Cyberabad police said that those behind the crime probably hacked into Laxman’s email account.
“According to the arrangement Laxman has with the Development Credit Bank, his money is transferred from one account to another through email notifications. The money is transferred after Laxman sends a mail to the branch manager,” said Sharmila, deputy commissioner of police (crime), Cyberabad.
“It appears that the person who hacked into Laxman’s email account sent a transfer request to the manager.”
Izazul’s widowed mother Rabea Bewa, who lives in Malda’s Kaliachak, said her son did not know how to use a computer.
“I am surprised that he has been accused of using a computer to steal money. He doesn’t know how to use a computer. He did not pass his Class X exams,” she said, alleging a “conspiracy”.
“Izazul would go to other states to work and return once in a while. I have no idea what he did while he was away from home,” she said.
Rabea lives in a tiled-roofed house with brick walls at Nabinagar village. The family owns a two-bigha plot where it does cocoon farming. Rabea said Izazul used to give money to her during his visits home.
Several people in Nabinagar said they found Izazul’s behaviour “suspicious”.
“No one knows what he does for a living. We used to see him once in a while. But I’m sure he doesn’t know how to use a computer,” said Mohammad Jamshuddin Biswas, a neighbour.
Another neighbour said Izazul used to claim he was a labourer but had never let on where he worked. “Izazul often wore good clothes,” he said.