Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002
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By Our Staff Reporter
The Inspector-General, EOW, K.R. Shyamsunder, told presspersons here today that about 10 days ago one racket was busted in Chennai following a tip-off by the Indian Embassy in Bahrain.
He said a travels firm issued an advertisement that recruitment would be made for posts of nurse and supervisor in vacancies announced by the Bahrain Ministry of Health.
The embassy, however, informed the Chief Secretary that there was no vacancy in Bahrain and requested government action.
Enquiries by the EOW personnel revealed that the advertisement was a ploy to lure people into cheating them. The Director of the travels firm, Kannaiya (67) and the manager, K. B. Harindran (34) were arrested on September 21 and remanded to custody till October 11.
A ``recruiting agent'', Ibrahim Abdul Kareem, who had come to interview the candidates, was arrested on September 27.
``They planned to collect Rs.1.25 lakhs per candidate and received an initial deposit of Rs.10,000 from those who had applied'', the IG said.
Pointing out that people in the Coimbatore region and Kerala were targeted by these ``agents'', Mr. Shyamsunder said that ``when they approach advertisers, the people should ask whether they had the licence issued by the Union Ministry of Labour and the Protector-General of the Emigration Registering Authority to function as recruitment firms.''
The EOW would fax copies of such advertisements to Indian embassies for ascertaining the facts.
`Chain-link business illegal'
Another racket was a ``chain-link business'' which lured people with prospects of easy money. Mostly dealing in consumer products, this business was flourishing in the garb of multilevel marketing.
``Multilevel marketing is legal as it follows a definite system and taxes are paid, whereas the chain-link business violates all rules and is totally illegal'', Mr. Shyam Sundar said. It was all about one person making a substantial amount of easy money, while those who fell prey to his persuasive tactics burnt their fingers.
However, the police were unable to initiate suo motu action as the line between both systems of business was blurred.
When it was pointed out that some firms openly indulged in such business and went unchecked, he said ``unless the affected people approach us with complaints, we cannot proceed against any firm or individual.''
On the cases dealt by the EOW, the IG said that since its formation on January 1, 2000, the wing had registered 613 cases of defrauding of depositors by non-banking financial companies. The amount involved was Rs.1,978 crores and the property seized was worth Rs.1,569 crores. A sum of Rs.403.50 crores was refunded to 6,54,530 depositors.
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