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Why the Indian Air Force has a high crash rate RAKESH KRISHNAN SIMHA

Why the Indian Air Force has a high crash rate

RAKESH KRISHNAN SIMHA
Rossiyskaya Gazeta
In the backdrop of the sixth Sukhoi crash in six years, here’s a look at some factors that contribute to the IAF’s high crash rate.

More than 200 Sukhoi Flankers currently form the core of the Indian Air Force’s strike element, for a planned force of over 272 Su-30 fighter-bombers. India received the initial batch of Sukhois in 2002. The first of these aircraft crashed in 2009, and since then five more have crashed.

Now let’s look at the Sukhois in other air forces.

The People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has 150 Flankers of Russian origin and 229 Chinese knockoffs. That’s a total of 379 aircraft, for an eventual figure of 400 Russian made Flankers, derivatives and illegal copies. And yet the PLAAF has lost fewer Sukhoi in crashes. Are the Chinese Sukhois better maintained, better built or are Chinese pilots simply playing it safe? More on that in a moment.

The Russian Air Force has a total of 438 Flankers. Again, the Russian Sukhois don’t tumble out of the air at a rate close to the IAF’s. Similarly, there have been no reports of Flankers of the Vietnamese and Indonesian air forces being involved in crashes.

пустым не оставлять!!

Indian Airforce’s Excuses for High Number of SU-30MKI CRASHES

Why the Flanker force matters

The IAF calls the Su-30 its “air dominance” fighter for a good reason. The arrival of the Sukhoi has decisively tilted the balance of power in favour of the IAF in the region. The Flanker’s super-manoeuvrability, its armoury of advanced beyond visual range missiles and extraordinary range of 3000 km (extendable to 8000 km with aerial refuelling) are aspects that make it the wolf of the skies.

The Su-30 is also equipped with synthetic aperture radar (SAR), which gives it greater long-range reconnaissance capabilities. Armed with the SAR pod, the IAF Sukho are known to engage in aggressive patrols along the China-India and India-Pakistan borders.

Considering the Flanker’s hunter-killer reputation, anyone who questions its capability is clearly living under a rock.

So what explains the loss of six IAF Flankers in crashes? Let’s go into the various probable causes and also dissect the theories floating out there.

Crash No.1: 30 April 2009

The first ever Su-30MKI crashes in the Pokhran region, Rajasthan. The IAF’s Court of Inquiry establishes Wing Commander Vishwas Munje mistakenly switched off the warplane’s fly-by-wire system.

Crash No.2: 30 November 2009

Sukhoi crashes near Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, after a fire warning. An IAF investigation attributes it to accidental ingestion of a foreign object in the engine intake.

Crash No.3: 13 December 2011

Aircraft crashes 20 km from Pune. IAF says the crash is due to a malfunction in the fly-by-wire system.

Crash No.4: 19 February 2013

Aircrafts right-wing explodes over Pokhran, shortly after completing a training mission.

Crash No.5: 14 October 2013

Fly-by-wire system malfunctions yet again and the Sukhoi goes down near Pune. Russian experts blame pilot error but the IAF says the Court of Inquiry is yet to pinpoint the exact reason.

Crash No.6: 19 May 2015

Su-30MKI flying from Tezpur in Assam develops a technical snag and the pilot is forced to abandon the aircraft. The cause is yet to be established. 

Now that you have a good idea of what exactly happened in those six crashes, let’s look at the possible reasons why jet fighters crash in India.

Possible reason No.1: Intense training

The IAF is one of the few air forces in the world that conduct intense, year-round training. Benjamin Lambeth of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace says the IAF trains for a “high intensity, high stakes” conflict. Keeping in mind the possibility of a two-front war, the IAF puts its pilots and aircraft through the wringer.

Mock air combat can involve hundreds of aircraft flying thousands of kilometres. During such a war game in 2013, Sukhois flew 1800-km bombing missions from Chabua in Assam to the western front, with mid-air refuelling. In fact, IAF pilots are known to lead missions over 10 hours in their Sukhois.

Such training places a great deal of stress on aircraft, pilots and aircrews, which means potentially more accidents. But that’s the way the IAF trains for war. In fact, a former air force chief has gone on record that he would rather lose pilots during training than during the war.

The strategy has been amply rewarded. In the 1971 War, for instance, the IAF was able to conduct a wide range of missions – troop support; air combat; deep penetration strikes; para-dropping behind enemy lines; feints to draw enemy fighters away from the actual target; bombing; and reconnaissance.

 

A PLAAF fighter pilot would most likely be reprimanded if he deviated from the flight plan set by his commanders. Losing a plane would be cause enough for a court-martial.

Thankfully, the IAF does not believe in having robots but values superior training and innovativeness. IAF pilots have truly internalised what Sergei Dolgushin, a Russian Air Force ace with 24 victories in WWII, said is a prerequisite to being a successful fighter pilot: “A love of hunting, a great desire to be the top dog”.

Possible reason No.2: Harsh environment

Harsh is normal in India. Tropical India is an unforgiving environment for any aircraft. The hot air means aircraft engines produce less thrust and the wing produce less lift compared to similar aircraft flying in European skies. Sun-baked runways are also known to impact landing safety. These are factors IAF pilots have to live with.

Bird hits are another huge factor in aircraft accidents over India. The IAF attributes around 10 per cent of accidents to bird hits. Most IAF bases are located near populated areas, where birds are a constant menace.

The situation has got so dire that the IAF last year issued global bids to four companies for 45 bird detection and monitoring radar systems to be installed at airports and air bases across India.

Possible reason No.3: Missing trainers

According to figures released by the Ministry of Defence in March 2013, the IAF was losing the equivalent of one fighter squadron (approximately 18 fighters) in accidents every two years. This was primarily because of the lack of an adequate number of trainers.

Rookie fighter pilots begin on basic trainers, then move on to intermediate jet trainers (IJTs) before finally graduating to advanced jet trainers (AJTs). These three stages are critical elements of fighter pilot training and any shortcuts will certainly lead to disaster.

But what was happening was that in the absence of an AJT, rookie pilots were moving straight from the IJT to frontline warplanes such as the MiG-21. The upshot – young pilots died at an alarming rate.

With the induction of the Swiss Pilatus basic trainer and Hawk AJT from Britain, the crashes have come down – but not stopped.

Possible reason No.4: Shoddy maintenance

India is notorious for its ‘chalta hai’ or ‘it’ll be alright’ attitude. In this backdrop, shoddy maintenance could well be a factor. Although the IAF is known for its high standards, those standards are largely of its pilots; maintenance crews may not share that quality. Of late, there have been a number of incidents reported widely in the media about IAF ground crew involved in all sorts of serious crimes. The IAF should look at establishing an elite division of ground crews to service its high-end aircraft.

Possible reason No.5: Depleted air force

The IAF’s fleet strength is currently down to 34 squadrons or around 600 warplanes. The sanctioned number is 42 squadrons. In a country as vast as India, with multiple threats, such depletion in fighter aircraft means fewer aircraft have to perform more missions to get the same job done. It also means less downtime in maintenance hangars. This is where India quickly needs to induct more locally built Tejas interceptors and more locally assembled Su-30s.

Silver lining

The good news is that aircraft crashes in the IAF have shown a declining trend over the last three years. From a high of 30 in fiscal 2011-12, they declined to six in 2012-13 and an equal number in 2013-14.

пустым не оставлять!!

The IAF is now looking to improve overall fleet serviceability. The air force recently told a parliamentary committee that fleet-wide serviceability stood at 60-65 per cent, but could be increased to 77-80 per cent, provided spares were made available.

During a visit to Bangalore in December, IAF chief ACM Arup Raha said: “Budgets remain a constraint, especially the revenue budget, to maintain spares for the aircraft to maintain high operational readiness.”

While the IAF is clearly doing its best under the circumstances, it needs to do better. Bringing the crash rate down to the US or European air force levels should be the goal. Losing a Sukhoi each year is akin to burning Rs 350 crore in cash.

All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

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Pakistan Think Tank

Uncommon Thought

 Author » Mahboob A. Khawaja, Ph.D. » You’re currently reading “Pakistan: Towards Understanding the Challenges of Political Change and Future-Making”5 August 2018

Pakistan: Towards Understanding the Challenges of Political Change and Future-Making

Imran Khan

[Photo: Imran Khan by Jawad Zakariya.]

By Mahboob Khawaja, PhD.Editor’s NoteOn July 25th, the people of Pakistan voted to break from the historically corrupt slate of candidates and voted in Imran Khan as Prime Minister. Khan is a retired cricket star who was not known for his team work, but that is a skill he will desperately need if he is to shift Pakistan onto a new track. While the people have voted, the power centers in the country are not being graceful losers. Instead, there have been credible threats against his life. Further, his party did not capture enough seats to control the parliament. Khan will need the continued participation and pressure of the people, as well as the skills of a seasoned statesmen, to steer Pakistan in a different direction.

Are the New National Elections a Prelude to Change?

People have spoken out loud and quite logically, Imran Khan is the elected candidate to lead a futuristic system of political governance. To discard the incurable resentment against the former indicted criminals turned politicians, the people of Pakistan have rejected them at the ballot box. The July 25 national elections under a caretaking non-partisan government were a history-making event in Pakistan. Had this happened some sixty years earlier, Pakistan could have been a leading model of democratic norms, social and economic cohesion and political stability for other nations in Southwest Asia. Instead, the so called Pakistani politicians – former neo-colonial landlords – were masters of lies and deception; inept and greedy egomaniacs who stole time and opportunities from the young and educated generations. They robbed the people of the opportunity to foster political change and productivity that would make Pakistan a stable nation.  While other progressive nations of the world encouraged participation and paved favorable opportunities to enlist an educated and intelligent generation of youth, Pakistani political leaders were naïve, indifferent, and guilty of plunging the nation into a moral and intellectual abyss.  None of the Islamic parties appear to have any worthwhile activism in the outcome of the elections. Have they succumbed to be impotent for the future?

Imran Khan, the newly elected would be Prime Minister wants to build a New Pakistan – a highly promising ideal and slogan under unusual political circumstances.  Pakistan desperately needs a new constitution and a new political system of governance, to advance a socio-economic and political integration between all the culturally diverse people in Punjab, Baluchistan, Pakhtoonva and Sindh. Pakistanis lost East Pakistan to India and surrendered in 1971 because they were foolish, corrupt and leaderless. The national integration, security, end to foreign aid and strategic cooperation, and political cohesion of the country must assume priorities over other major policy agendas.  To dispel history’s malicious ironies, Imran Khan will need to widen the scope of his thinking and strategic planning to encompass the prevaling political realities of Pakistan. Khan should be open to listening and learning all the time.

What Needs to be Changed?

Nothing is normal in today’s Pakistan.  Institutionalized corruption is a favorite perversion to attract people’s support for new ideals of change and anti-corruption psychology.  Most indicted criminals like Nawaz Sharif, Bhuttos, Zardrai – all wanted to serve the noble ideals of political fairness, honesty, socio-economic stability, human rights and law and justice. The problem was, none of them had such qualities in their own lives and characters. How could they have given to others what was not part of their own life and possessions? One cannot combine wickedness and righteousness in one human character.  To make Imran Khan comparatively a credible candidate for genuinely soft approaches to articulate a new and sustainable combination of cultural thinking, ideals and strategies for a New Pakistan, it is imperative Mr. Khan must know and fully comprehend the nature and scope of the sickness that continued for decades to rob the nation of its due opportunities for change and future-making. He needs to understand that there has been a deliberate  pillaging to the wealth and potential of Pakistan, and this has resulted in massive destruction of the socio-economic, moral, intellectual and political infrastructures of the nation. None of the former criminals were punished visa-a-vis their crimes against the nation. Mr. Khan does have first–hand knowledge and observations of lot of such accumulated pillage over the decades..

Mr. Khan appears to be patriotic person with immense know-how and abilities; however, he must realize rebuilding a nation is not an individual task but requires the collective efforts of wide range of thinkers, intellectuals, planners and expertise to work as a team and undertake proactive progressive assignments from top to bottom, not the other way in Pakistan. The dishonesty underlying Pakistan’s political landscape is nothing new or unknown.  Allow this conscientious author to ask: WHO IS NOT CORRUPT IN PAKISTANI POLITICS?   If you get a chance to read “Pakistan: Enigma of Change” (series of articles -1999 onward in Media Monitors Network, USA), and “Pakistan: Leaders who could not Lead” (10/2007, Media Monitors Network, USA;  “Pakistan: Leaders who stabbed the Nation”, 2010;  “Pakistan : Anatomy of Turbulent 68th Independence Day”, “Pakistan in Quest of Navigational Change” (2014), by this author, you should have no rational problem understanding the realities of today’s sadistic politics of Pakistan.

Towards the Imperatives of Change and Reconstruction

For over 70 years, Pakistan had no viable system of political governance corresponding to the moral, intellectual and political genius of the masses. The ruling elite and the people lived in conflicting time zones generating wide gulfs of mistrust, worsened by foreign influence, corruption, military dictators, and disdainful politicians lacking a sense of honesty and accountability.  They were deaf to reason and lacked a conscience necessary to serve the public good. How do you change such a filthy and stinking piles of socio-political culture whereby all the well known thugs and criminals have looted the resources, lifelines and positive energies of the people just for their own good?  Mr. Khan must face the existing realities to THINK of the future or he will become part of the piled garbage – a junk history of the nation. He must enlarge the scope of proactive thinking and enlist people of knowledge, intellect moral and professional caliber and those without any stains on their conscience to help him carve a beginning for a new future.  He must be careful not to include any pathological liars and interlocutors who were part of darkest chapters of Pakistan’s contemporary history. In parliamentary governance, Imran Khan with 115 seats at the National Assembly would require 22 more elected members to have 137 numbers for a political governance. There should be no horse-trading if he is to successfully enact an innovative strategy to build a New Pakistan.  It will be imperative to put all those egoistic rulers of the past out of business. Their cumulative dishonesty underlying the failure of politics was clear and obvious.  Perhaps, educated and intelligent Pakistanis living abroad could be more helpful to Imran Khan if he is serious about developing a New and people-oriented 21st century democratic Pakistan. Often historical errors of judgment and mistakes are irretrievable. If truth and logic has its place in the future-making of New Pakistan, it must have a new Constitution, Presidential system of political governance, a non-partisan strong community of law and justice, retrained elite in the civil services, independent foreign policies and constantly changing and progressive strategies to plan for the future and make it happen out of the planned ideas and workable ideals. Experts and intellectuals who deal with future-making must know the weaknesses of  a non-productive socio-economic culture, highly corrupted civil elite and strength of the role of the masses for a durable future.  Nothing will change or happen on its own without any critical thinking and prompt diagnostic action with proper follow-up methods of meeting the end purpose.

To change and enhance political reformation and developing a new presidential form of governance, Imran Khan would urgently need a coalition of well educated, intelligent and honest proactive people of the younger generation to build a foundation of ideas and ideals and workable strategies based on refined plans for future-making. It is apparent that after this highly contested election, the nation will not accept normalcy of having previous indicted thugs, criminals and killers as part of the solution for future-making. Imran Khan must be careful not to indulge in melodramatic claims for the future; it could undermine his political future without making it happen on the ground. He should not rely on party loyalists or other seasonal collaborators, but those enriched with a sense of honesty and an obligation to work as a team and usher in a collective plan of action for change and progressively sustainable results. Political powerhouses must be connected to the thoughts and aspirations of the masses and be of service to them. The corrupting force of foreign aid must be stopped in order to implement a strategy of self-reliance and development of Pakistans own resources and socio-economic strength. Pakistan could be a progressive nation if there is no systematic corruption and if proactive plans for change are implemented honestly to make the difference. Nations are not built by chance or by the few, but by collective thinking and action plan to make the future happen. Then we must monitor its progress continuously with fullest accountability for the policy outcomes. Good judgments and logical pursuits seek rational and balanced strategies to ensure collective progress and accountability, lack of such imperatives eventually find failure, imbalance and treachery to the ideals of nation-building. Given his sense of proclaimed honesty and clean political character, Mr. Imran Khan must know the 21st century requisites of creative and effective leadership and must not allow ego turned into a kind of cancer that could consume the self and indulge in perversion of the challenging realities of Pakistan’s future-making.

Dr. Mahboob A. Khawaja specializes in global security, peace and conflict resolution with keen interests in Islamic-Western comparative cultures and civilizations, and author of several publications including: Global Peace and Conflict Management: Man and Humanity in Search of New Thinking. Lambert Publishing Germany, May 2012. His forthcoming book is entitled: One Humanity and The Remaking of Global Peace, Security and Conflict Resolution

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The Accursed and Traitorous – BudhBakhti Ke Akhirey Hud

The Accursed and Traitorous

Inline image

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He Also Stood by Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)

Letter to Editor

April 20th, 2018

He Also Stood

 

Yes Sir, he also stood but in the last row, 4th from the right with only 3 others out of the 53 lower in a protocol to him.

The occasion was the official group photograph of the Commonwealth Heads of the State with Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace, London, and one just can’t imagine that the order of seating and standing was not meticulously planned by the organisers of the event. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, representing the 2nd most populous country (200 plus  millions) of the Commonwealth only after India (2.1 billion) and ahead of Nigeria (170 million) and  Bangladesh (160 million), with the 2nd  largest highly professional and well equipped standing army and the 3rd CW Nuclear Power out of the only 7 world nuclear powers with its delivery system  to hurl its nukes anywhere across the globe  was conspicuous by his absence from the front rows !

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PM Abbasi attends opening ceremony of CHOGM 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mr PM, you might not have felt being out of place at the photo session to stand after the piddling little never or little-heard-of countries like Antigua, Barbuda, Belize, Dominica, Fiji, Grenadines, Guyana Kiribati, Lesotho, Malawi, Nauru, Samoa, Seychelles, Tonga and Tobago etc. etc.  Sir, you may also be not considering yourself worthy of being a PM and still living under the shadow of MNS or you may also be not feeling slighted in taking off your clothes at the JFK, but Sir, we the nationals of Pakistan do feel humiliated by such treatment meted out to our Prime Minister. You would have done us and the country great honour by politely declining to be photographed in the manner you were subjected to.  But I suppose …

 

 

Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)
30 Westridge 1
Rawalpindi 46000
Pakistan
Tel: (051) 5158033
E.mail: jafri@rifiela.com

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This is what happens when India Call Center Scammer calls a US Software Engineer

 

India’s Call-Center Put to a Criminal Use: Swindling Americans

 

India Sticks it to US:

A TRUMP-MODI LOVEFEST GONE AWRY

 

 
Pawan Poojary, 18, left, and Jayesh Dubey, 19, were part of a scheme targeting Americans run from a call center in Thane, a suburb of Mumbai, India. CreditPoras Chaudhary for The New York Times

THANE, India — Betsy Broder, who tracks international fraud at the Federal Trade Commission, was in her office in Washington last summer when she got a call from two Indian teenagers.

Calling from a high-rise building in a suburb of Mumbai, they told her, in tones that were alternately earnest and melodramatic, that they wanted to share the details of a sprawling criminal operation targeting Americans. Ms. Broder, who was no stranger to whistle-blowers, pressed the young men for details.

“He said his name was Adam,” she said, referring to one of the pair. “I said: ‘Your name is not Adam. What does your grandmother call you?’ He said, ‘Babu.’”

Babu was Jayesh Dubey, a skinny 19-year-old with hair gelled into vertical bristles, a little like a chimney brush. He told her that he was working in a seven-story building and that everyone there was engaged in the same activity: impersonating Internal Revenue Service officials and threatening Americans, demanding immediate payment to cover back taxes.

If they reached a person who was sufficiently terrified or gullible — this was known in the business as a “sale” — they would instruct that person to buy thousands of dollars’ worth of iTunes cards to avoid prosecution, they said; the most rattled among them complied. The victim would then send the codes from the iTunes cards to the swindlers, giving them access to the money on the card.

Continue reading the main story

 
 

As it happened, the United States government had been tracking this India-based scheme since 2013, a period during which Americans, many of them recent immigrants, have lost $100 million to it.

Though India had no reputation as a large-scale exporter of fraud in the past, it is now seen as a major center for fraud, said Suhel Daud, an F.B.I. agent who serves as assistant legal attaché at the embassy in New Delhi. Several trends have converged to make this happen, he said: a demographic bulge of computer-savvy, young, English-speaking job seekers; a vast call center culture; super-efficient technology; and what can only be described as ingenuity.

“They have figured all of this out,” Mr. Daud said. “Put all of these together, with the Indian demographics in the U.S., and it’s a natural segue. Whatever money you’re making, you can easily make 10 times as much.”

‘I Want Money. That’s Why.’

Pawan Poojary and Jayesh Dubey, best friends and college dropouts, were impressed with the Phoenix 007 call center in Thane, a suburb northeast of Mumbai. The interviewer carried an iPhone; there were racing sport bikes parked outside, and, as Mr. Poojary put it, “girls roaming here and there.” The monthly salary was average for call centers, 16,000 rupees (about $230), they said, but the bonuses were double or triple that, based on sales.

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Notes kept by the whistle-blowers during their training at the call center. Credit: Poras Chaudhary for The New York Times

The two friends had been playing a video game for up to eight hours a day, pausing occasionally to eat. They wanted in.

“At that time, in my mind is that I want money,” Mr. Poojary, 18, said. “That’s it. I want money. That’s why.”

They said they showed up for training in a room of young Indians like themselves, the first in their family to be educated in English. They were a slice of aspirational India: Mr. Poojary’s father, who owned two welding shops, was adamant that his son would rise to a higher place in society, an office job. Mr. Poojary was afraid to tell him he had dropped out of college.

The trainer assigned them names, Paul Edward and Adam Williams, and handed out a six-page script that started out, “My name is Shawn Anderson, with the department of legal affairs with the United States Treasury Department,” the teenagers said.

“We read the script, and I asked, ‘Is this a scam?’” Mr. Poojary said. “He said, ‘Yes.’”

“At that time I am money-minded. I thought, ‘O.K., I can do this,’” he said.

Mr. Poojary was excited and nervous about speaking to an American for the first time, and he was alarmed by the resulting bursts of profanity. Mr. Dubey said he tried to commit the entire experience to memory, in case he and Mr. Poojary someday decided to start a business of their own.

“I just wanted to become a great scammer,” Mr. Dubey said. “Everyone was scamming around me. I thought, ‘I will also become a great scammer.’”

The key to the whole thing, Mr. Dubey decided, was a psychological fact: Americans fear their state.

“I think they actually are really afraid of their government,” he said. “In India, people are not afraid of the police. If anyone wants to come and arrest, they say, ‘Come and arrest.’ It is easy to get out of anything. But in America they are afraid. We just need to tell them, ‘You are messing with the federal government,’ and that is all.”

Preying on Fear

Inaben Desai, of Sugar Land, Tex., came home from grocery shopping, and her mother handed her the phone, eyes wide with alarm. Someone was on the line from the government, her mother said. They had called three or four times while she was out.

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Betsy Broder tracks international fraud at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington.CreditAl Drago/The New York Times

Ms. Desai, 56, worked as a cashier at Walmart. When she picked up the phone, a gruff-voiced man told her that she had failed to pay fees when she got her United States citizenship, in 1995, and that unless she did so she would be deported back to India, she said. When Ms. Desai said she needed to call her husband, a woman got on the phone, speaking sympathetically, in her native Gujarati.

“She said, ‘If you involve your husband, there’s going to be more problems,’’ Ms. Desai said. “‘Your husband is going to get in trouble, too. Don’t involve your husband.’”

Ms. Desai had begun to cry. Still, on the line with the woman, she took all the cash she had on hand and drove to a nearby grocery store, where she bought $1,386 in prepaid debit cards. Then the woman instructed her to go to her bank, transfer close to $9,000 to the account of someone named Jennifer, in California, and then fax confirmation and confidential details about her account.

“The bank lady tried to stop me, and she said, ‘This is your personal information,’’ Ms. Desai said. “But I’m scared, and I faxed it to them because I’m scared of what would happen to my family.” The swindlers, who now had access to her bank balance, called back to demand another sum close to $9,000. Ms. Desai had to drive to another bank branch to make the transaction. The total amount she transferred, $17,786, was nearly all her savings.

Mr. Poojary was not the person who called Ms. Desai, whose case dates to 2014. But a similar conversation prompted him to contact the United States government. He recalled the woman’s name as Regella and said that when she begged him to give her a little time, Mr. Poojary felt so sorry for her that he went to his supervisor, who told him to push harder.

“I just feel guilty at that time,” he said. “We are also Indians. We also don’t have money. They also don’t have money.”

A few days later, he called the main switchboard at the I.R.S. and said he wanted to pass on information about a crime. “They are not listening, they are just laughing at me,” he said.

Finally, he was transferred to Ms. Broder, the Federal Trade Commission’s counsel for international consumer protection.

“He was fairly insistent,” she recalled. “He was determined. The number of times he called me was overwhelming. I would guess that is why he was reaching out to me, because he wanted some form of law enforcement to take it down.”

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The Phoenix 007 call center initially occupied a floor of this high-rise on Mira Road in Thane, but it eventually filled the entire building. Credit: Poras Chaudhary for The New York Times

The Raid

The risk of expanding a fraud aggressively is that the range of potential informants also expands. Supervisors may humiliate employees in front of their peers; paychecks may arrive late or not at all; ringleaders may spend so freely that they attract tax officials’ gaze.

The so-called Mira Road scam, named for the building’s neighborhood, had moved into a single floor of the seven-story high-rise in early 2016. By summer it filled the whole building.

 

“It got big,” said Mr. Daud, the F.B.I. agent. “And when it gets big, you leave bread crumbs.”

Nitin Thakare, a senior police inspector at the crime branch in Thane, will not say much about the person who contacted him in September with a tip.

But he will describe the raid, in loving, cinematic detail: How at 10 p.m., after the last of the call center staff had arrived for the night shift, 200 police officers streamed up the main staircase, blocking every exit and detaining all 700 people who worked inside.

As morning approached, the street outside filled with the workers’ parents, wives and girlfriends, said Amar Verma, who sells tea on the corner. “There was lots of sobbing,” he said. “There was one mother who came with her car. She was crying alone, the poor thing. She was sitting on the pavement in front of me, crying. Her child had not come home.”

Inside, the police cut the phone lines. Under interrogation, the suspects, one after another, insisted that they had been planning to quit just as soon as they collected their next paycheck, Mr. Thakare said. But the money made it hard to walk away, and after a few pay cycles, their qualms had faded. He felt for them.

“These are the youth of our nation,” he said. “They were misguided. For the first few days, it seems glamorous. Someone is teaching them an accent, people are smoking, there are women. There’s freedom and night-life. The youth love that.”

The police said that others, like the landlord who had rented the building to the swindlers, wondered why the authorities cared in the first place. “He said, ‘What happened?’” said Parag Manere, a deputy commissioner of police.

“We are not cheating people in India! We are cheating people in the U.S.! And the U.S. cheats the whole world!’”

The officers interviewed and released 630 of the call-center workers, arresting the 70 highest-ranking employees.

What they had stumbled on, it became clear, was a branch of a much larger network, the police said. Five days later, the police organized a second raid, of facilities in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, which they believed to be a nerve center. The Justice Department had come to the same conclusion: It has since released an indictment tracing 1.8 million calls targeting American residents to five call centers in Ahmedabad that used various schemes to defraud more than 15,000 people out of hundreds of millions of dollars.

By the time the police arrived at the Ahmedabad location, though, the syndicate was gone. “The place where we raided, it was a thousand-seat call center,” Mr. Manere said. “When we got there it was empty. Empty. Nothing. Not a piece of paper. Empty halls.”

‘It Will Not Stop’

Mr. Poojary said he happened to be at a job interview when he learned that the call centre in Mira Road had been raided.

It was an honest, mundane customer service job, advising the customers of Delta Air Lines on such matters as lost baggage and frequent-flier miles, for a mediocre monthly salary of $150. He was sitting on a waiting room sofa when he picked up The Times of India and read that 700 of his co-workers had been detained the night before.

The first person he contacted was Ms Broder, to tell her that the raid had hit the same operation he had described to her. That night, he and Mr Dubey, who had left the Mira Road center after contacting Ms. Broder, celebrated over drinks.

“We brought it down,Mr. Dubey said. “It started out as fun, then it got boring, then we truly understood the good and dirty parts of the job. Then we decided to bring it down.”

Whistle-blowers’ motives are often murky, and in their early conversations, Ms. Broder wondered fleetingly whether the two friends were calling on behalf of the scheme’s organizers to determine what American investigators knew. In an interview with The New York Times, the two men acknowledged being fired from the call center after getting into an altercation with co-workers.

Their claim to have brought down the center is unfounded, according to Indian and American investigators, who said that the raid in Thane was carried out entirely by the local police, without assistance from American officials. The Thane police said their informant was not employed by the swindlers. The raid was international news, and in the weeks that followed, the number of fraudulent I.R.S. calls to Americans dropped 95 percent, according to the Better Business Bureau.

But those who believe that the drop is permanent should consider this: In the weeks after Mr. Poojary and Mr Dubey left the center, several lucrative job opportunities were presented to them. Each involved a phone scheme targeting Americans, they said. There was the Viagra scam, in which callers offered to sell cut-rate Viagra; there was a low-interest loan scam, in which people were asked to deposit $1,000 as proof of income. There was a tech scam, which warned Americans that their computer had been infected by a virus, and an American Express scam, which involved gathering personal information to break through security barriers on online accounts.

“Even if you shut down 400 buildings in India, it will not stop,” said Mr. Dubey, now known by his Delta clients as Jacob Davis. The two friends say they have given up on the notion of getting rich quickly, or of being paid by the United States government for the information they provided.

It has been replaced by a new hope — that, perhaps as a result of the public service they have provided, they will be granted visas to the United States, the home of so many of their favorite things: “The Fast and the Furious,” Vin Diesel and Robert Downey Jr. “I’ve spent so much time getting to know it, familiarizing myself with its states, talking to its people,” Mr. Dubey said. “I feel a bond.”

Correction: January 3, 2017 
Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this article referred incorrectly to Mira Road. It is a neighborhood, not a street.

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