in , ,

Thane Cops Crack Child Porn Ring: Here’s What Happened Behind the Scenes

The videos shared in the group were not just a horrible expression of twisted sexuality, but also highly illegal.

A shocking revelation has bought Thane, Maharashtra into the news for all the wrong reasons. A WhatsApp group in the city, with some 217 members, was openly sharing child pornography – and almost none of the members seemed to mind!

Instead, as was later discovered, members requested the admins of the group to share more such videos. Thankfully, Thane (rural) police sprang to action as soon as they were informed of the group and busted the ringleaders.

The Better India spoke to Atul Kulkarni, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), Thane (rural), about how they cracked the case and what measures can one take to steer clear of such horrors.

“A member from the WhatsApp group called ‘BB Bad Boys’ informed us about it. He had joined the group thinking it’s some tech group.

But soon he discovered these disturbing things being shared in it. So he left the group and informed us,” the IPS officer told The Better India.

Representative image. Source.

But the informant was alert enough to take screenshots of the phone numbers of the group members before he left the group. This helped the police track the numbers down efficiently.

He had first approached Ritesh Bhatia, a cybercrime and cybersecurity expert based in Mumbai.

“This is not your average WhatsApp group where people wish each other ‘Good Morning’ or ‘Good Night’, send festival greetings or say ‘Happy Independence day’. The group is purely for porn,” he told the Indian Express. Bhatia further said, ” I did a detailed investigation at the request of the police and advised him to approach the police station closest to where he lives to file a complaint.”

The videos shared in the group were not just a horrible expression of twisted sexuality, but also highly illegal. Section 67B of the Information Technology Act clearly states that anyone who publishes, transmits or creates text or digital images of children in a sexually explicit act is punishable by law.

By this measure, the complainant himself was at risk when he approached the police. But he filed an FIR nonetheless – an act of courage in India, where most people shy away from ‘getting involved’.

Source: Facebook/ Mira Bhayandar Police.

An inquiry into the WhatsApp group revealed that members were not only spread across India but also in some other countries. The Thane police began tracking them down by the phone numbers given to them by the complainant.

“Around 18 people, including the group admins, were sharing child pornography. Although other people were only part of the group, it becomes an offence against the IT act – viewing, downloading, asking or uploading such clips,” IPS officer Kulkarni told TBI.

The Thane Police have reason to believe that the admins would either access the ‘darknet’ for the videos or had sources that would send them the videos. Some of the videos were from India, but a majority were from other countries too.

With easy access to thousands of people through social media, the criminals worked their way up to make this a group of over 200 members.

Representative image. Source.

Earlier this month, the police arrested five members of the group from various places in Maharashtra. Three of the arrested were college students. They are still on the hunt for other members from Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

Many people have exited the group after the news about the crackdowns broke out, but the admins still haven’t deleted the group. Some have even removed WhatsApp from their phones altogether. But this is not too much of a worry for the Thane Police; the officer informed TBI confidently. They are already tracking the criminals down.


You may also like: Latur Earthquake to Kerala Floods: IAS Officer’s Unique Link to Maharashtra’s Relief Efforts!


In a world connected through WhatsApp, it isn’t hard to be pulled down in such groups or rumour chains – sometimes by accident. It becomes a matter of exceeding concern for parents too because they can’t always keep track of what their children are getting into.

So what can be done? Here’s what the IPS officer advised –

Source: Facebook/ Mira Bhayandar Police.

1. Through a new feature of WhatsApp, you can receive invitations to groups even from unsaved numbers. If you happen to receive such a link, make sure you know and trust some members of the group before you join it.

2. The group admins may have personal or financial gains from sharing such videos. So even being a passive member of the group benefits the admin. It also makes you a criminal against the IT act Section 67 B. Do not remain members in any group that you are unsure about.

3. Some admins may even ask you for a joining fee to a group. Never pay them. Instead, inform your nearest police station immediately, if the offer is suspicious.

4. If you happen to join such a group accidentally, you could take screenshots of the numbers, as happened in the case above, exit the group immediately and inform the police.

5. The IPS officer also stated that it is necessary for parents to have conversations about such things with their children, right from the age when they understand and operate social media or WhatsApp.


You may also like: IPS Officer’s Brilliant Initiatives Changed the Face of Women Safety in Maha District!


An open conversation as two equals (rather than an instruction from a parent to a child) could work wonders in preventing such crimes.

As they say, a stitch in time saves nine!

(Edited by Vinayak Hegde)

Like this story? Or have something to share?
Write to us: contact@thebetterindia.com
Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.