Shivraj Puri lured the account holders of Citibank by offering a whopping 18% annual interest. He even returned their money every three months to gain their confidence. According to the police, Puri used to return the money on a monthly interest of 1.5%.
“Till December 21 this year, Puri used to return the money to investors and might have continued to do so had the bank not zeroed in on him,” said a source in the Gurgaon police. “Once the bank got to know that Puri was part of a scheme, they asked him to return the money to the investors as it was against bank policy,” the source added.
Puri started the scheme in September 2009 and kept returning money to investors till his arrest.
“For example, an associate of the Hero group invested R5 crore and after a year, he returned the money with interest. On earning profit, the same associate invested R10 crore the next time and asked more associates to invest the money. That’s how Puri’s network grew and he managed to return the money by investing it further,” he added.
“The rate of interest offered by Puri doesn’t exist in the market. Those who invested their money should have verified Puri’s claims,” Gurgaon police commissioner SS Deswal said.
Police sources also said that Citibank tried to convince Puri to return the money to investors as it would affect the image of the bank. “For the next six days after December 21, the bank conducted an internal investigation and informed the police on the night of December 27, which is when Puri refused to return the money,” the source added.