Karnataka chief minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Tuesday handed over the IMA Jewels scandal probe to a special investigation team (SIT), two days after news broke that thousands of people had fallen victim to a scam in the country’s information technology capital.
“Considering the seriousness of the #IMAJewels fraud, the inquiry has been handed over to a special investigation team and instructions regarding this have been given to the DGP," Kumaraswamy said on the official Twitter handle of the chief minister.
In Shivaji Nagar, tens of hundreds of victims poured into a small convention hall—where the police have set up special kiosks—to register their complaints against IMA Jewels, part of IMA group of companies, whose senior management has been absconding for a few days now.
Sixty-one year old Abdul Rawoof, a vegetable dealer, said that he had invested a total of ₹5 lakh and was getting his returns till about two months ago. “They used to give us 3% consistently and then it fell to 1.1% in March and then it stopped," Rawoof said, holding all certificates issued by the company.
The Bengaluru-based company had been collecting investments for several years assuring returns of over 3% per month or nearly 36% a year. Meanwhile the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) posted a picture of an undated picture of Mohammed Mansoor Khan, the absconding chief of IMA jewels with Kumaraswamy on Twitter.
“Good to know you have known this fraud for a long time. Should help you catch him soon. Your job is to catch the fraudster & not cry victim on twitter. Get your priorities right," the state BJP’s official twitter handle wrote. “& when I eat, you too eat" is a way of life in @JanataDal_S, frauds like Mohammed Mansoor Khan tend to eat, loot & scoot. Btw @hd_kumaraswamy’s biryani day with frauds speaks a lot about acceptance. Must be tough acknowledging it. Isn’t it," another tweet by the saffron outfit said.
The names of some politicians have been made public by Khan, who had released an audio recording before he went missing.