Al Madina Marriage rip-off: A number of traders lose lakhs as predominant accused nonetheless absconds

A number of victims of the Ponzi rip-off had saved cash for a marriage however had been left excessive and dry when the accused, Sheikh Mahmood, went lacking with their cash.

A good-looking mannequin carrying a Pathan kurta is seated on a sofa and he blushes as music from a 70s romance flick performs within the background. “They are saying marriages are made in heaven, however to get associate, it’s best to think about Al Madina marriage bureau,” says the actor within the two-minute lengthy commercial. This advert is without doubt one of the many who tricked a number of households into investing in a Ponzi scheme. Households that had saved up cash for weddings have approached the Hyderabad police with complaints.

Although 4 individuals had been arrested in connection to the case, the mastermind behind the Ponzi scheme has been absconding since June.

Within the brief video ads, the founder and proprietor of Al Madina marriage bureau, Sheikh Mahmood, is launched carrying an outsized blazer and holding a cellphone.

“The wedding bureau has 20 workplaces throughout the town and districts in Telangana,” says a voice-over in an commercial that encourages the general public to take a position their cash with the Al Madina marriage bureau, which, in flip, guarantees to take a position it within the enterprise. The agency supplied Rs 5,000 as curiosity for each Rs 1 lakh invested with them. Up to now, near 50 victims of the fraud have approached the police taking assist from anti-corruption activists.

Abdul labored near the Al Madina marriage bureau’s head workplace at Tolichowki and had saved Rs 7.5 lakhs for his sister’s marriage. “They informed me that there’s one yr time for her marriage and requested me to take a position the cash with them till the time of marriage. They stated I’ll get quantity, however I used to be cheated,” he says.

One other sufferer of the rip-off misplaced Rs 30 lakh that he had saved up for the wedding of his three youngsters.

The rip-off has additionally affected households as an entire. A lady who didn’t want to be recognized stated she invested Rs 40 lakh, gathering the quantity from her three sisters for the wedding of their youngsters. One of many 4 sisters, a single mom, shelled out all of her meagre Rs 1 lakh in financial savings into the rip-off.

Within the FIR filed on the central crime station (CCS) by a sufferer, Mirza Arshad Baig, the police booked all of the accused within the Al Madina marriage bureau rip-off below Part 406 (Punishment for prison breach of belief), Part 420 (Dishonest and dishonestly inducing supply of property) in addition to sections of the Telangana State Safety of Depositors of Monetary Institutions (TSPDFE) Act, 1999.

Shahbaz Ahmed Khan, anti-corruption activist who runs assist teams for victims of Multi-Degree Advertising (MLM) scams, says that the police have stopped accepting particular person complaints made by the victims. He says that the police have begun treating a number of instances in opposition to the scammers as a single case as a substitute.

“There have been a number of Multi-Degree Advertising and Ponzi scams which have emerged out of Hyderabad. The accused in these instances typically get bail and begin their scamming work over again. Submitting a number of FIRs throughout a number of stations used to make sure that these individuals, even when they arrive out of bail, get picked up by police from one other jurisdiction,” says Shahbaz, citing the instance of Nowhera Shaik, the Managing Director of the Heera group, accused in a number of MLM rip-off instances.

“Within the Heera group case, we had ensured that the a number of FIRs stored the scammers in jail whereas the investigation proceeded with out their interference. However that’s not potential now with the police not accepting FIRs from every sufferer,” he provides.

The activist stated earlier in August that a number of victims who had invested and misplaced cash in Tijarah Stick Investments, which claimed to do halaal investments within the inventory market. The accused within the rip-off, Syed Muqtar Ali, an Islamic Non secular Instructor and Musalli of a Mosque at Shantinagar used to supply Rs 3,000 as curiosity for each Rs 1 lakh invested in his scheme. A number of of the victims TNM spoke to stated their complaints filed at Banjara Hills police station and Nampally police station had been “closed”.

Ayesha Begum, who misplaced Rs 5 lakhs within the Tijarah rip-off stated that she bought a textual content message from the Nampally police station saying her grievance has been closed because it was civil in nature. Ayesha was clueless on find out how to proceed along with her grievance and was additionally not sure if her grievance has been clubbed with FIRs filed at different police stations.

Chatting with TNM, Avinash Mohanty, Deputy Commissioner of Police, answerable for CCS says that 4 arrests have been made within the Al Madina Marriage bureau case to date, however the principle accused remains to be absconding.

“We now have hooked up the property of the accused to the case, however these instances take a very long time in courtroom,” says the officer, who added that if a number of individuals complain to the identical police station, the FIR might be handled as one. “But when an individual has filed a grievance in his jurisdictional police station, then there could possibly be two FIRs,” he provides.

The officer says that such scams are rampant throughout the nation and never simply restricted to Hyderabad. “A set deposit presents you a most of 6% annual curiosity. These scammers supply 5% curiosity monthly, so naturally it turns into a horny funding choice. When individuals see that an individual who invested will get an everyday curiosity quantity for the primary few years, extra individuals be part of and ultimately get scammed.”

Watch: TNM Explainer: The Sandalwood Drug case

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