Why ED attached Amway India's assets worth crores? Things to know about the case
Amway India, one of the country's renowned multi-level marketing company on Monday had its assets worth ₹757 crore attached by the Enforcement Directorate in a money laundering case. The central agency accused the company of running a pyramid fraud in the guise of a direct-selling multi-level marketing network.
What is the case all about?
The Enforcement Directorate alleged that Amway brought ₹21.39 crore as share capital in the country in 1996-97 and till the financial year 2020-21, it remitted ₹2,859 crore in the name of dividend, royalty and other payments.
According to the probe agency, two companies namely Britt Worldwide India Private Limited and Network Twenty One Private Limited played a key role in promoting Amway's scheme by conducting seminars to induct members under the guise of sale of goods through chain system membership.
The agency said the company collected a total amount of ₹27,562 crore from its business operations during 2002-03 to 2021-22 and of this, "paid" a commission of ₹7,588 crore to its distributors and members in India and the United States from 2002-03 to 2020-21.
ED: Amway duped gullible members
The probe agency alleged that the common public was lured into join as members of the company and purchase products at exorbitant prices and lost their hard earned money. Adding further, the agency claimed the new members were not buying products to use but to become rich after getting membership as portrayed by upline members.
What assets has ED attached?
The attached properties include land and factory buildings of Amway located in Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu, plant and machineries, vehicles, bank accounts and fixed deposits.
Of the total attachment value, immovable and movable properties are worth ₹411.83 crore, while the remaining amount of ₹345.94 crore is deposited in 36 bank accounts "belonging" to Amway.
Facing heat from the central agency, the Amway said it is cooperating with the authorities "towards a fair legal, and logical conclusion of the outstanding issues". The company said the ED action was with regard to an investigation dating back to 2011 and since then, it has been cooperating with the agency and has shared all the information sought by it from time to time.
"Amway has a rich history of maintaining the highest levels of probity, integrity, corporate governance and consumer protection, which are much ahead of time in the interest of the consumers at large," the spokesperson said.
Officials involved in the probe said the company had been operating in the country for years and many people were linked to its MLM scheme.
"As the matter is sub-judice, we do not wish to comment further," the spokesperson said.
(With PTI inputs)