The infidelity detectives | Cover Story | Times Crest
Popular on Times Crest
  • In This Section
  • Entire Website
  • Dying to get in
    July 13, 2013
    At its AGM held on June 29, 2008 it was resolved to put a 5-year freeze on membership applications at Bangalore's most coveted club, the…
  • Club hits
    July 13, 2013
    Despite their restrictive membership rules, colonial trappings and archaic dress (and gadget) codes, India's private clubs haven't lost…
  • Finer tastes
    July 13, 2013
    It is the culinary tradition and its grand interiors that Bengal Club is justifiably proud of.
More in this Section
Leaving tiger watching to raise rice Ecologist Debal Deb, who did his post-doctoral research from IISc in…
The crorepati writer He's the man who gives Big B his lines. RD Tailang, the writer of KBC.
Chennai-Toronto express Review Raja is a Canadian enthusiast whose quirky video reviews of Tamil…
Don't parrot, perform Maestro Buddhadev Dasgupta will hold a masterclass on ragas.
A man's man Shivananda Khan spent his life speaking up for men who have sex with men.
Bhowmick and the first family of Indian football At first glance, it would be the craziest set-up in professional football.
From Times Blogs
The end of Detroit
Jobs in Detroit's car factories are moving to India.
Chidanand Rajghatta
How I love the word ‘dobaara’...
Can ‘bindaas’ or ‘jhakaas’ survive transliteration?
Shobhaa De
Anand marte nahin...
India's first superstar died almost a lonely life.
Robin Roy
Matrimonial snoops

The infidelity detectives


HIDE & SEEK: Cheating partners arouse suspicion if they suddenly change their hair style or if their phone's always busy

For the growing tribe of matrimonial snoops, "extra-curricular activities" are a good source of income 

The banker's wife is sleeping with his brother-in-law. The manager is having an affair with his curvy assistant. A government official is busy on a "conference" in Bangkok.

Somebody is watching them, camera rolling, engine running. And it's one of India's multiplying tribe of infidelity detectives.

When Delhi-based Baldev Kumar Puri started off as a cub detective in 1986, infidelity investigations were rare. But now he, and scores of snoops in the country, counts matrimonial surveillance as their bread and butter.

Puri, whose father was also a detective, says he started his career with corporate investigations. "Earlier cases were restricted to the elite class - only they had the money to spend on investigations. Now, everyone comes to us, when they see signs of straying. " Puri's agency, called AMX Detectives Pvt Ltd, gets up to 50 cases a month.

The frequency of cases of infidelity, in fact, makes an appearance in a recent book, The Masala Murder, by Madhumita Bhattacharya, whose protagonist steadily gets disillusioned with being a detective when she has to deal with a huge pile of such cases.

"A lot of private detectives in India and abroad have to deal with this. Especially now with internet dating, and the Shaadi. coms of the world, the feeling among women is that they don't know the person they are marrying. And since elders are not performing their traditional role of groom vetting, women are going to detectives for it, " says Bhattacharya.

Most of those collecting evidence against their partners' transgressions are women, with about 75% married and the rest in committed relationships. "Unfortunately, " says Sanjay Singh, owner of the Delhi-based Indian Detective Agency, "Ninety per cent of the suspicions turn out to be correct. Most people have pretty strong suspicions about their partners and are mostly right but they don't want to gather the evidence themselves. "
So what are the tell-tale signs of a philandering spouse? Has he or she changed their hairstyle or dipped into the peroxide bottle for the first time? And check out that underwear : Did the wife recently decide she just had to have new lingerie? Or has the husband inexplicably traded his boxer shorts for bikini briefs?

Predictably, the role of technology is pretty significant in catching the errant partner. Get suspicious when the mobile phone is always busy or the pre-paid balance on phone keeps running out, say detectives. "More often than not, people get caught because of their text messages, BBMs, chats etc, " says Singh, whose agency earns 30-40 per cent of its revenue through such investigations. Checking out your spouse or partner's extra-curricular activities can cost anything from Rs 30, 000 to Rs 80, 000 depending on the complexity of the case or the number of days required. Many clients also use agencies to collect incriminating evidence they can use when they file for divorce.

The perception of a PI as a shifty-looking guy in a dark macintosh, hat and glasses is not true. For one thing, quite a few detectives are women. More than three quarters of Puri's staff is women, most of who are used as bait in honey traps. Apart from clients who want to catch their partners in flagrante, many also want to test the strength of their loyalty, says Puri.

Some detectives even stray into the territory of marriage counselling. Puri branched out into couples counselling in 2009, when he saw that many clients wanted to work on their marriages or relationships. This is because, in many cases, the person cheated on wants the marriage to survive.

Reader's opinion (1)

Ganapathiradhakrishnan Dec 2nd, 2012 at 11:36 AM

a better counselling is the only solutions.

Other Times Group news sites
The Times of India | The Economic Times
इकनॉमिक टाइम्स | ઈકોનોમિક ટાઈમ્સ
Mumbai Mirror | Times Now
Indiatimes | नवभारत टाइम्स
महाराष्ट्र टाइम्स
Living and entertainment
Timescity | iDiva | Bollywood | Zoom
| Technoholik |


itimes | Dating & Chat | Email
Hot on the Web
Book print ads | Online shopping | Business solutions | Book domains | Web hosting
Business email | Free SMS | Free email | Website design | CRM | Tenders | Remit
Cheap air tickets | Matrimonial | Ringtones | Astrology | Jobs | Property | Buy car
Online Deals
About us | Advertise with us | Terms of Use and Grievance Redressal Policy | Privacy policy | Feedback
Copyright© 2010 Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. All rights reserved. For reprint rights: Times Syndication Service