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    HaryanaNIA assumes investigation of Bobby Kataria case involving charges of human trafficking...

    NIA assumes investigation of Bobby Kataria case involving charges of human trafficking and cyber crime


    The Investigation Agency (NIA) has taken control of the investigation against social media star Bobby Kataria and others for their alleged involvement in human trafficking and cyber offences targeting Indian youth. Kataria, who gained immense popularity on social platforms like Instagram for his stunt videos, has been accused along with an accomplice of luring young job seekers from to countries in Southeast Asia with false promises of employment.

    It is alleged that victims were then forced to work in undesirable conditions at illegal call centers engaged in online scams and fraud. The case came to light after several victims, including one from Uttar Pradesh, were rescued from one such operation in Laos earlier this year with help from Indian authorities. Ministry of Home Affairs has now directed the NIA to intervene in the case, citing the seriousness and nature of the crimes.

    The anti-terrorism agency has taken over all case records from the local Gurugram police who had initially arrested Kataria and others. It is learnt that a dedicated investigation team from NIA's regional headquarters in Chandigarh has been put in charge of the complex probe. Sources indicate the agency may seek police custody of key accused to aid its investigations into the full scope of the transnational criminal syndicate.

    A court production of Bobby Kataria and other detained individuals before an NIA special court in Panchkula is scheduled for later this month, where the federal probe body is expected to request for his remand. The case has highlighted the misuse of social media platforms and influencer status for illegal activities impacting many vulnerable citizens. NIA's involvement ensures a thorough and comprehensive investigation utilizing relevant national and international cooperation.

    The development comes as a setback to Kataria, whose image and popularity as a prominent Instagram personality are now severely dented by the serious criminal charges. The alleged victims meanwhile deserve justice and support as they recover from the traumatic experience. NIA's focused probing aims to deliver both while exposing any lingering dangers from such transnational human trafficking networks.

    The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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