New Delhi, Nov 11 , A Delhi-based journalist fell prey to a scam orchestrated by a woman he met on the Bumble dating app, even as she claimed that she was looking for a “meaningful connection”, only to abandon the date mid-way in haste after making him place order for drinks and food for which he ended up paying over Rs 15,000, and eventually going “incognito”.
Taking to social media platform ‘X’, Archit Gupta detailed the unfolding of events, describing what he went through as “not just a fraud but emotional harassment”.
He recalled how a woman named Divya Sharma (an alias, later identified by Truecaller as Aifya) initiated contact on the Bumble dating app, expressing interest in a meaningful connection.
The ‘deceptive date’ led him to an establishment called “The Race Lounge and Bar” — a venue Gupta had reservations about — in west Delhi’s Rajouri Garden, where he allegedly ended up footing a bill of around Rs 16,000 for sub-par drinks and food.
“I thought, let’s take a chance on Bumble and see if there is a genuine person to date. A girl named Divya Sharma (fake name) approached me and asked me to meet her at Rajouri Garden. She convinced me that she was looking for something meaningful,” he wrote in the note shared on X.
Upon returning from the restroom, Gupta discovered that the bill he left on the table had disappeared.
“She took me to a bar, The Race Lounge and Bar. Despite not being convinced of the place, Aifya (her real name, as per Truecaller) insisted that I sit there. She ordered some drinks for herself. I don’t drink, so I just ordered a Red Bull. The bill for a hookah, 2-3 glasses of wine, 1 vodka shot, chicken tikka, and a water bottle was Rs 15,886,” he further stated.
“I was shocked after seeing the bill. I paid for the bill. They tapped my card four times as there was some issue with their machine. Before leaving the place, I went to the washroom, and upon returning, I realised that the bill I left on the table was not there. She insisted on leaving the place, saying that her brother is coming to pick her up. When I came home, I realised that this is a scam,” he wrote.
“I checked, and she had just disappeared and was not picking up my calls. Then I searched and found a story on a media outlet, and I got to know about how these clubs and bars are hiring girls and doing this fraud. This is not just about money; this is emotional and mental abuse for a person who thinks that the person sitting in front of him is genuine. I investigated the whole thing and found some reviews on the Google page of that lounge,” he further wrote.
Expressing frustration at the lack of response from authorities, Gupta recounted his attempts to seek assistance from the Axis Bank credit card helpline and the cyber police helpline.
“In the reviews, many people described how they were forced to pay an unfair bill. Many people are scammed by these clubs. Late at night, I called the Axis Bank credit card helpline and put the payment in dispute. I called the cyber police helpline many times but got no response,” he claimed.
Gupta claimed that such rackets, involving the coercion of patrons through hired bouncers, were prevalent in various cafes and clubs in the Rajouri Garden area.
“This post is not about how I lost my money; this is about these people fooling many boys, and this is not just a fraud; this is emotional harassment. They don’t have any fear; they hired bouncers to force people to pay the unfair bill. This whole racket is big, and they are operating in many cafes and clubs in the Rajouri Garden Area,” he further wrote.