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Old 16th November 2017, 10:27   #1
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Default The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Hey Readers, I am not a very regular poster on the forum, more of just a read and absorb sponge.

I recently moved to Pune, and a few incidents observed here have led to the creation of this thread.

The incident described below has occurred with a family member of mine, in my absence, and I have had an opportunity to see it repeat live, in front of me, to an unknown person. The similarity of this, with other Team BHP members personal as well as anecdotal incidents have led to this thread.

Consider this, a lady is driving a four wheeler, with a child in the car. This is a common scenario in the morning and early afternoon in Pune, as that is the drop off and pickup time slot for several kindergartners.

Suddenly, a noise is heard from outside (a Thak, if you may) and a biker is seen falling in front of the car. There is no clue where this magician materialized from, and how he came in front. Before the lady is able to process this information, two masked men start making a hullabaloo and gather a large crowd to support the magical victim.

The masked men will ensure the lady is tormented enough that she is not able to properly react. Photos of the lady, child, car will be taken immediately, a video is taken of the surroundings, and this attracts a larger crowd to gather around.

Finally, one of them will demand 2,000 to 4,000 for the victim, as his motorcycle is damaged. A famulus (magicians assistant) will come, proclaim himself as a mechanic from the nearby garage and suggest the mentioned figure to be correct.

At this stage, most women will give in and pay to be able to leave. In some cases, if a signal is close by, a traffic cop will come up, not really do much for either side, and ask the parties involved to settle off the issue ASAP as traffic congestion has started.

So, why is this a scam? See the depiction below.

The noise heard is made by the supporting crew (the masked bikers) and the person who falls in front has a pre-damaged two wheeler. If the lady has friends coming to help, the masked men vanish. If the friends take the decrepit bike for repairs to a nearby local garage, you will find it vanish once you have given money for repairs based on the estimate of 300-500 Rs.

In our case, we got help from Pune based BHPian friends 599gto & neonwheels and non-member petrolhead Sushant.

Have you encountered this anywhere? In Pune or any other city? Do comment below.
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Old 16th November 2017, 10:47   #2
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Default re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

These things are/were common in other cities too I guess, going by experiences shared by BHPians and others on social media.

While you can't change the mentality of people, the worst part in all this is the absolute lack of help and governance from authorities (read: cops).

Please mention this experience on Pune Traffic Police's Facebook page; I'm sure they'll be many more people sharing similar experiences. I sincerely hope Pune Police (especially our popular Commissioner) are capable of curbing these incidents, rather than just a fancy photo op and safety awareness videos in theaters.

Such things make the presence of a dash cam even more significant.
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Old 16th November 2017, 18:23   #3
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Default re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post

Such things make the presence of a dash cam even more significant.
This is the most important thing on our roads!

When this happens I wouldn't fight it out, but later on go and file a police complaints. If the bike number is caught on camera, along with pictures of the accused - the Police can act on it swiftly and bring it to a close.
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Old 16th November 2017, 19:01   #4
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Default re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Quote:
Originally Posted by latentpotential View Post
I recently moved to Pune, and a few incidents observed here have led to the creation of this thread.
Request you to specify the area as well, since that will help people to be more vigilant of these practices.
If there is a presence of CCTV nearby, your family member should still go ahead and register a complaint.

Last edited by silverado : 16th November 2017 at 19:07.
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Old 16th November 2017, 23:20   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverado View Post
Request you to specify the area as well, since that will help people to be more vigilant of these practices.
If there is a presence of CCTV nearby, your family member should still go ahead and register a complaint.
Very well.

On Baner road, we were a victim a while ago.

Today, near the almost completed bridge on Karve road (towards Warje), it occurred to someone else, lady with a kid. I advised her to call 100, wait for police and go via this route, instead of setting up.

I guess, this gang is sufficiently mobile.
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Old 16th November 2017, 23:36   #6
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Default re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Goodness gracious. I had heard of these things in other cities. Was blissfully unaware of them happening in Pune as well. Well ignorance is bliss. Or is it??

First thing I order now will be a good quality dashcam!
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Old 17th November 2017, 10:09   #7
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Default Re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Best recourse in such a situation is to call the police to the spot and / or insist on visiting the police station. 99% of these scamsters will run away.

Only the courts have the authority to decide on who compensates whom, and even for that, we have 3rd-party insurance coverage.
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Old 23rd March 2018, 09:20   #8
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Default Re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

One more incident of Thak Thak gang.

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Old 14th April 2018, 10:04   #9
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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/63753656.cms

One more similar case has come up in Pune.
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Old 18th April 2018, 22:01   #10
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Default Re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

These tak-tak robbery gangs are also very active in Navi Mumbai area mainly around Vashi, CBD Belapur, Nerul and Kharghar. I have encountered these gangs thrice in the last year. Most recently in February, I had encountered the Car-Spark gang in Vashi, Navi Mumbai. Related Thread:http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/street...et-fooled.html

Thankfully, I had read a lot about these gangs in the news and I knew their modus-operandi before hand due to which I was alert and foiled their plans. These gangs usually consist of two to three gang members who are on the lookout for really gullible easy prey, mostly when you are driving alone.

I have always made it a point to click pictures of these fraud con-men and straight away file a FIR with the nearest police station in the hope that these robbers will get their punishment soon. These unscruplous robbers may even damage your car doors / windows when they find out that the doors are locked and you don't pay heed to them. In any case, it's best to keep your car doors locked and never ever open your car windows down completely to interact with these fraud men. Infact, the moment these robbers see you clicking a picture of them with your camera, they will run to save their lives.

From my personal experience, the worst part about the 'car-spark' gang is how they fool unsuspecting people who in good faith believe that something is really wrong with their car and end up paying these con-men whatever sum they demand for fake repairs carried out, when in reality, nothing was wrong with the car in the first place. All this done with extremely sweet talk, assuring you that they saved you from your car catching fire in the nick of time and taking advantage of the good faith that you place in them. These type of fraudsters should never ever be spared, and never ever be entertained on the road. The only way to avoid these type of frauds from happening is to never ever trust anyone on the road no matter how nicely they speak to you. Better to always be safe, than sorry. Also attaching a picture for the benefit of fellow BHP-ians on how the 'car-spark' gang works. Pic Courtesy - TOI
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Old 18th April 2018, 22:22   #11
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Default Re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Not a similar scam but recently during a lane change I was little careless than usual and merged into middle lane from inner lane and another biker merged into the lane at the same time from behind a car in the outer lane. We both came together and thankfully due to low speeds, it was not serious. The motorcyclist fell down with the passenger who both were college aged guys and immediately started blaming me for the incident when it was actually 50-50 fault. The motorcycle had bent handlebar, broken mirrors and both guys had road rashes, my car was not significantly damaged except for a small dent on the side.

I had things to attend to and the crowd were not listening to my argument and even pointing them my dashcam which should partially show the incident fell on deaf years. The crowd was restive as the bikers were from the neighborhood and was not ready to go to a police station as well. Basically, they entrapped with me no way to leave from there unless I settle. I ended up paying 500Rs. for their repairs and left the scene after taking pictures for my evidence in case it comes back as hit and run case.

Took a day or two for the anger on myself and my inability to do anything in that scenario to subside.

This country's roads are still wild west and we should either be ready to fight or pay off and move on.

Last edited by Yieldway17 : 18th April 2018 at 22:24.
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Old 13th August 2018, 13:14   #12
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Default Re: The Thak Thak gang - Fake accident, then extortion

Something I have noticed a couple of times while visiting Delhi is that on the way back nearby Narela some guys station themselves at the traffic lights and I believe they look for vehicles registered outside Delhi.
Then they will come up to you purposely and say random stuff like your car has a puncture or there is some other problem.
All they need to do is to catch you off guard and one might open the driver's door and they might run away with your stuff or force their way inside.
Fellow Delhi-NCR Bhpians , please shed some light on this.
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