"Come use your banned Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes here," declare sex clubs in Bengaluru openly on social media websites.
When the entire nation is perhaps wondering what to do with their banned notes, one racket in Bengaluru offers a shocking bargain - sex for old notes.
On the surface, it appears that the banned currency note exchange mafia has now decided to tie up with Bengaluru's booming sex rackets. Interestingly, even the arrest of persons and the revealing of the racket in the media does not deter these sex services, which mainly operate in places close to the International Airport.
Asianet Newsable uncovered one such a racket that openly runs these twin illegal business in the heart of the city near Hebbal. The pimp, named Nakul, deals with female sex workers and houses them in layouts in Hebbal, posting pictures on 'Locanto', a website. Through the site, the pimp also claims to accept old banned Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.
"We even have the facility to allow our customers to use their debits card. This is not a brothel but an entertainment club. We have a wide range of women including house wives, college girls and models. We provide services at independent homes, and it is very safe from police raids," Nakul, the pimp, shared with Asianet Newsable. When asked about the banned notes, he said they would be accepted but an extra amount would be charged as exchanging the notes for new legal ones is very risky.
The Cyber Police Wing of Karnataka, which puts such websites under its scanner, is aware of the sex business thriving in the city. "Many such brothels and prostitution rackets are operated through the internet. By the time we try to catch them, the persons behind the scene change their numbers and locations," said a senior officer from the cyber police wing. He further added that they would try to source the details of the person behind this sex and banned currency exchange racket.
The officer also claimed that sometimes even innocent women's names and numbers were published on such websites. This is to take revenge or to trouble them. "When such person complains, we try to trace the source where the details have been hosted and block the site," he said.