'Panelist' of Speak Asia's multi-level scheme held | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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'Panelist' of Speak Asia's multi-level scheme held

Police today arrested a 'panelist' of a controversial multi-level scheme of the Singapore-based online survey company, Speak Asia, which allegedly duped over 12 lakh investors across India to the tune of Rs 1,300 crore.

mumbai Updated: Jul 30, 2011 19:47 IST

Police today arrested a 'panelist' of a controversial multi-level scheme of the Singapore-based online survey company, Speak Asia, which allegedly duped over 12 lakh investors across India to the tune of Rs 1,300 crore. With this, the number of persons arrested in the case has gone up to five.

Speak Asia had promised lucrative returns through a multi-marketing pyramid model. The firm allegedly duped investors, also called panelists, by assuring them commission if they introduced new members.

"Deepankar Sarkar was picked up from Raipur, brought to Mumbai and was arrested. He was one of the first persons who invested in the scheme.

Sarkar later continued to promote the controversial scheme," Additional Police Commissioner (EOW) Rajwardhan told PTI. The city police yesterday arrested the Speak Asia's Chief Operating Officer in India (COO) Tarak Bajpai, Financial Manager Ravi Khanna, the webportal's technicians, Rajeev Malhotra and Rais Khan.

The FIR in the case was registered on Thursday by Economic Offences Wing (EOW) based on a complaint by an investor, who lost at least Rs six lakh in the form of various investments, in Speak Asia.

Indian-origin Singapore national and Chairman of the company, Haren Kaur, the firm's India Chief Executive Officer, Manojkumar Sharma and others allegedly involved in the multi-crore scam, are still absconding. So far, a total Rs 1,320-crore investments have been made in the Speak Asia. Even after paying some returns to the investors, it would be at least a Rs 1,300-crore scam, police said.