The chairman of a cooperative credit society was arrested by the Santacruz police on Wednesday for reportedly swindling crores of investors’ money.
Radheshyam Gupta, the chairman of Dhanlakshmi cooperative credit society, had been arrested previously in similar cases.
Investors said the credit society lured people with exciting investment schemes including pension plans, fixed deposits and insurance plan.
“I invested in the credit society in 2002. Initially, I received the yearly benefits but 2005 onwards, they began defaulting on payments. Whenever we approached them, they would assure us that we would receive our payment soon,” said an investor on condition of anonymity.
Investors said that over several months, they had frequently approached the police but no action was taken against Gupta till Vishwas Nangrepatil, additional commissioner of police (west region), Santacruz police, intervened in the matter on Tuesday night.
“I ordered the Santacruz police to start an inquiry into the case and lodge a first information report (FIR) against the erring party,” said Nangrepatil. The FIR was lodged on the basis of 25 written complaints from investors.
“We have been approaching the Santacruz police for six months. Each time, they would tell us this was a civil matter and that they couldn’t lodge a case. They asked us to approach the court instead. The amount swindled by the credit society is to the tune of several crores,” said Rajiv Sharma, an advocate.
Sharma claims that his family, friends and he had invested around Rs8 crores in the credit society.
However, Madhukar Chaudhari, senior inspector of Santacruz police station said, “A lot of investors had approached us in the past following which we had called Gupta. However, when Gupta promised to return the money, the investors would not lodge a complaint. We have now arrested Gupta under section 420 of the Indian Penal Code.”
The case is likely to be transferred to the Economic Offences Wing.