A luxury hotel in Delhi’s Aerocity claimed to have incurred a loss of Rs 58 lakh when a guest, in collusion with hotel staff, managed to stay for nearly two years without making any payment.
The hotel, Roseate House in Aerocity near Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport, has reported a crime to the police station at IGI Airport.
Ankush Dutta checked out of Roseate without paying a single rupee, according to the FIR recently filed by Vinod Malhotra, an accepted agent of Bird Airports Hotel Private Limited, which owns and operates Roseate. Ankush Dutta stayed for 603 days at a cost of 58 lakh. The FIR alleges that Prem Prakash, the hotel’s head of the front office department, allowed Dutta’s prolonged stay to violate hotel rules. Prakash had the authority to decide room rates and access to the hotel’s computer system to track all guest remaining balances.
The hotel’s management suspects that Prakash might have received money from Mr. Dutta as a reward for allowing him to overstay his welcome using internal software that monitors and maintains visitors’ stays and visits as well as their accounts.
“A criminal conspiracy was hatched by guest Mr Ankush Dutta along with some known and unknown hotel staff, including Mr Prem Prakash with a motive to gain wrongfully and deprive the hotel of its rightful dues,” the FIR said.
“In pursuance of the said conspiracy, the alleged staff of the hotel forged, deleted, added accounts entries and falsified a large number of entries in the account of the said guest Ankush Dutta in the Opera software system of the hotel,” it added.
Dutta allegedly checked in on May 30, 2019, and booked a room for one night, according to the hotel. Although he was supposed to leave on May 31, he kept extending his stay till January 22, 2021.
Prakash Neglects Dutta’s Outstanding Balance, Failing to Inform CEO and FC
According to hotel policy, if a guest’s remaining balance exceeds over 72 hours old, the CEO and Financial Controller should be contacted for information and to seek instruction. Prakash, however, failed to pay Dutta’s due to the hotel’s CEO and FC.
Prakash failed to submit any outstanding payment reports between May 30, 2019, and October 25, 2019, according to the FIR. Even after October 25 when he prepared the outstanding payment report, he forged it by combining the unrelated guests’ outstanding bills into one bill was done to conceal Dutta’s unpaid balance.
According to the hotel, Prakash used a variety of strategies to make sure Dutta had a comfortable stay. He even established an account to appear as though other hotel guests had paid for Dutta, which turned out to be fabricated.
“The scrutiny of the record of the alleged officials of the hotel revealed that they created several fake and false pending bills to benefit Ankush Dutta by adopting various ways like as removing room nights from his bills, transferring his debits into the bills of other guests’ bills, using settled bills of other guests by incorporating his name in the bill, etc,” the FIR said.
The hotel additionally noticed that Dutta issued three cheque totaling Rs. 10 lakh, Rs. 7 lakh, and Rs. 20 lakh at various times, but all of them bounced, and Prakash failed to notify the hotel management of this fact. The hotel has demanded strict legal action against the culprits as “they have committed criminal offences, criminal breach of trust, cheating, forgery and falsification of accounts”.
The IGI police are now carrying out a further inquiry into the incident after an initial inquiry showed that the violations were made out prima facie.