Victims seek Visakhapatnam police help to return from Cambodia

The investigation revealed that hundreds of unemployed youths from Visakhapatnam were lured with the promise of data entry jobs in Singapore, only to be trafficked to Cambodia.
Victims of human trafficking racket revolted against their handlers in Sihanoukville, Cambodia I Express
Victims of human trafficking racket revolted against their handlers in Sihanoukville, Cambodia I Express

VISAKHAPATNAM : Days after the Visakhapatnam police uncovered a human trafficking racket which operated from Cambodia, around 300 Indians revolted against their handlers in Sihanoukville, Cambodia.

The riots, which erupted on Monday night, took place in Jinbei and Compound, areas well-known for cybercrime activities. Following the revolt, many of the affected individuals reached out to Indian authorities for assistance. They contacted the Visakhapatnam City Police through WhatsApp, sharing videos and requesting safe repatriation to India.

In response, Commissioner of Police A Ravi Shankar, coordinated with the Bureau of Immigration, Ministry of External Affairs, and Ministry of Home Affairs to ensure the safe return of those detained after the riots. The Indian Embassy in Phnom Penh has issued a communiqué stating that they are actively pursuing the matter of human trafficking with Cambodian authorities.

Seven special teams have been constituted to investigate the trafficking network, led by Fakkeerappa Kaginelli, Joint Commissioner of Police, Vizag. Ravi Shankar urged victims and their families to contact CI Cybercrimes at 9490617917, CP WhatsApp at 9493336633, or the Control Room at 0891-2565454 for immediate assistance.

The investigation revealed that hundreds of unemployed youths from Visakhapatnam were lured with the promise of data entry jobs in Singapore, only to be trafficked to Cambodia.

After the unemployed youths reached there, they were held captive, tortured and forced to commit cybercrimes against Indian citizens. Their passports were confiscated, and they were prevented from contacting their families. They were coerced into executing FedEx scams, stock market, and task-game frauds.

Indian Embassy sets up control room in Sihanoukville to extend aid to victims

Key arrests in the case include Chukka Rajesh Vijay Kumar, Mannena Gnaneswara Rao and Sabbavarapu Kondala Rao, who were identified as agents recruiting youths for their Cambodian handlers. Interrogation of these suspects revealed that approximately 150 youths from Vizag and nearby areas had been trafficked to Cambodia over the past year.

Visakhapatnam City Police, under the guidance of Commissioner Ravi Shankar, have been actively working to get the names of the trafficked persons and contact their families. Many victims have described the severe hardship and inhumane treatment they endured at the hands of their captors in Cambodia.

The Indian Embassy in Phnom Penh has issued a communiqué stating that they are actively pursuing the matter of human trafficking with Cambodian authorities. A temporary control room has been opened, and a team of officials has been dispatched to assist the stranded Indians. The embassy has been in touch with several Indian nationals, who were evacuated from Jinbei-4 on May 20. Cambodian authorities informed the embassy that around 60 Indian nationals have been sent from Sihanoukville to Phnom Penh for repatriation assistance. The embassy has set up a temporary control room in Sihanoukville, operational from May 21-23, and can be reached at +85510642777.

Indian nationals facing difficulties can also contact the embassy’s emergency number +85592881676, or email cons.phnompenh@mea.gov.in.

The embassy has issued advisories warning Indians against unauthorised agents. The Government of India and the embassy rescued and repatriated over 360 individuals so far.

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