EOW freezes over Rs 6.57 cr from private company illegally providing online loan

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EOW freezes over Rs 6.57 cr from private company illegally providing online loan

Bhubaneswar, May 3 (UNI) Bhubaneswar’s Economic Crimes Wing (EOW) has frozen more than Rs 6.57 crore from four accounts of a private company which provided illegal online loans and took advantage of its customers. EOW sources here on Tuesday said they froze an amount of Rs 6,57,34,829 in four accounts of Mahagram Payments Pvt Ltd u/s 294/506/507/420/467/468/120 IPC & 66 D of IT Act. He said the company was not registered with the RBI as an NBFC. A series of complaints have been received by EOW BBSR regarding illegally operating lending apps which are not registered as NBFC under the Reserve Bank of India Act. The economic crimes wing has taken up the investigation into one of these “KOKO” APP loans. This has a related version called “JOJO”. More than 1.5 lakh people have downloaded this app, many of them from Odisha. Based on the investigation, it is discovered that these fake lending apps once uploaded in his mobile playstore credit small amounts ranging from 3000 to 5000 via UPI or link to customer’s bank account. Once the amount is credited to the customer’s bank account, within one week the customer is asked to repay the amount with an excessive rate of interest. When the customer refuses to pay the high rate of interest, he is humiliated in many ways. Offensive texts, obscene messages and indecent photos are sent to his contact list as well as his Whatsapp number. During further investigation, it was established that the victims who downloaded the KOKO loan app from the Play Store were credited with small amounts by a company named Mahagram Payments Private Ltd, which is not registered with RBI as NBFC. The accused company, through its debt collectors, placed WhatsApp and live calls to the victims, humiliating them with foul language to return the money with up to 5 times the interest rate within a week . The accused company credited the said amount but collected the refunded amounts from the victims through one of its corporate clients, IWT India, Gurgaon. All transactions were done using multiple layers to avoid police/law enforcement. In this regard, as a first step to prevent further extortion and illegal money lending by the said accused company and its client IWT India, EOW froze an amount of Rs 6.57 Crores in different accounts of the accused company. As this company has used many complicated and technical ways to evade detection and confuse the minds of the police, EOW enlists technical experts/bank officers/chartered accountant to solve the case. Three EOW special teams are working on this case in different states like Maharashtra, Bihar, UP and New Delhi and are in contact with Telangana Police. EOW advised people not to take loans from illegal unregistered lending apps available on internet and playstore to contain such crimes. Like loan apps under the guise of advancing a loan, gain access to customer phone information, which can then be used by the business to carry out another financial crime. In some states, many people have committed suicide by being continually humiliated by the debt collectors of these illegal loan APPs. Sources at EOW said if anyone had ever taken out a loan they should report the matter to the police. A plethora of such illegal loan apps are available on the internet like INS loan, Beloan app, cash, Go money, India loan, loan, palm tree, cash cola, kreditbee, Asan Loan, Rupee Wallet, Fast Rupee, Easy Credit Loan App, Sun Loan Rupeeking Loan App and asked people to be careful. UNI BD ARN

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