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IMA Ponzi Scam: CBI Conducts Searches at 15 Locations in Karnataka, UP

Multi disciplinary teams of the agency carried out searches at 11 places in Bengaluru and one each in Mandya, Ramanagara, Belgaum and one place in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, they said.

New Delhi: The CBI on Friday conducted searches at 15 locations in Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh, including the premises of some senior officers of Karnataka Police, in connection with the I-Monetary Advisory (IMA) ponzi scam, officials said

Multi disciplinary teams of the agency carried out searches at 11 places in Bengaluru and one each in Mandya, Ramanagara, Belgaum and one place in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, they said.

The team comprised of chartered accountants, forensic auditors, computer forensic experts, bankers and officials from various other regulatory departments, the officials said.

Searches were conducted at residences of then IG Economic Offences Wing CID Hemant Nimbalkar, Deputy SP CID EB Sridhara, then DCP East Bengaluru Ajay Hilory, Inspector and SHO Commercial Street Police Station M Ramesh.

SI of the Commercial Street police station Gowri Shankar, then ACP Bengaluru North Sub Division and competent authority under KPID Act LC Nagaraj, then DCO Bengaluru Urban District BM Vijayshankar.

Residence of then village accountant Bnegaluru North Sub Division Manjunatha, then chief manager Bangalore Development Authority PD Kumar were also searched, they said.

The agency alleged these public servants had conducted inquiries against the IMA group entities, furnished favourable reports and had given clean chits to entities of IMA as a result no action was initiated against the company, which let the fraud continue unhindered, the officials said.

The agency said the Reserve Bank of India repeatedly flagged the issue about unauthorised collections and raising of deposits by the IMA group at the state level coordination committee meetings and had also written several letters to various authorities in Karnataka.

Based on these letters from the RBI, enquiries were conducted through the above mentioned officers, the officials said

These officers allegedly failed in their duties in pointing out glaring irregularities committed by the IMA group and gave clean chits, they said.

Investigations into the expenditure statements of IMA group have revealed alleged payments of huge bribe amounts on multiple occasions by the company directors to these officials, the officials said.

The agency said investigations conducted so far have revealed deliberate inaction and favours to the IMA group on the part of these public servants and authorities for several months, they said.

The multi-crore ponzi scheme run by Karnataka-based IMA and its group entities allegedly duped lakhs of people promising higher returns using Islamic ways of investment.

The CBI had registered a case on August 30 against Mohammed Mansoor Khan, managing director of the company, and others pursuant to the notifications issued by the Karnataka government and the government of India, the officials said.

The agency has already filed two charge sheets in the case, they said.

During the course of searches, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has collected documents of properties, material objects and digital evidence, the officials said.

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