By Sanjeev Kumar Singh Chauhan
New Delhi: The ‘Boys Locker Room’ Instagram case exploded after a fight between the victim students and the perpetrators. But the police did not receive any complaint about this nor did they have any information about this abusive game of blackmail.
These facts have emerged in the investigation by the Delhi Police Cyber Cell since the past five days.
More than 15 people in this case have been questioned by the Cyber Cell so far. Police has also seized 10 mobile phones. As the probe goes deeper into the case, those involved are said to be concealing themselves.
IANS has come to know all these facts through a top officer associated with Delhi Police Cyber Cell. On the condition of anonymity, the officer said, “Actually the chain is not limited to Delhi only. It is now reaching Gurugram and Noida as well. During the investigation so far, a prominent English school in Noida where one student is studying has come up. Some more evidence is also being collected against this student. However, the mobile phone of this main accused student has been blocked since the exposure.”
When the main conspirator’s mobile is not reachable, then will the investigation be stuck for a long time? In response to a question from IANS, the cyber cell officer said, “No, it is not so. The last location of the accused has been found out. The mobile CDR (call detail report) had found out the numbers on which the accused are mostly talking. There is no role of those mobile number holders in this case at the moment. It has been learnt that though the case has now unfolded, the main accused student was already mischievous and his school record is also not good.”
Has the school even taken any drastic action against such students? When asked, a member of the cyber cell team said, “No, our investigation does not concern the school. We are looking for this student and witnesses and evidence for the entire case. Right now this student and his family has not been found at their address. So till this student is not found, we (Delhi Police Cyber Cell) cannot reach any concrete conclusion.”
Have all the other accused too disappeared by switching off their mobiles? A member of the Delhi Police Cyber Cell team said, “No, it is not so. Most of the accused and victims are with us. Some have switched off their phones. But their CDR is with us.”
So where are the police teams raiding in search of those who are wanted? On being asked, the same officer said, “The lockdown is going on. It is not right to go on raids everywhere for no reason. And then most of the juveniles are also involved in this case. When the police team raids neighbours can also be disturbed. Because of social distancing we have to take care to avoid corona infection. We are only going where we expect 99 per cent of the accused or victims to be.”
How helpful have the information received by the Delhi Police Cyber Cell from Instagram been so far? When asked, a member of the team said, “There is no significant benefit. We have got much more material from our own investigation than what Instagram provided. However, we also got information from Instagram and included it in the investigation. Because legally it is important.”
The matter was not exposed by the police, but because of the mutual conflict in the group. It came to light when a member of the group started making obscene comments on his classmate’s photographs. When the screenshots of this fight went viral it was only then that this hideous spectacle was revealed.
The main administrator of this Instagram group is a 12th class student of a prominent English medium school in Noida, who together with three or four friends, created the now infamous group called ‘Boys Locker Room’. So far, 27 adults and minors have been linked to the case.
Delhi Police Cyber Cell had asked for some evidence/information in writing from Instagram about these 27 persons so that the real conspirators can be found and the victims rescued. The Cyber Cell has asked for detailed information from Instagram about some people whom even the group’s administrator has no information about. One of the admins is in custody.
Mostly students of class 10, 11 and 12 have been confirmed to be involved in this group or are victims. One of the reasons for the case being exposed is that three or four girls had spoken out against vulgar comments and photographs about themselves in the group.