Says two private companies cheated over five crore investors

The CBI said here on Thursday it had unearthed a Rs.45,000-crore pyramid scheme scam run by two private companies on the pretext of allotment of farm land to over five crore investors.

“Initial investigations have revealed an alleged scam to the tune of Rs.45,000 crore by a Delhi-based private company and others by raising investments through a collective investment scheme under the garb of sale and development of agricultural land,” a CBI spokesperson said.

Pursuant to a Supreme Court directive, the agency registered a case against the company and another firm which employed a similar modus operandi to cheat investors after the first company was directed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court to wind up the scheme and make repayments to the investors.

“During the past five days, a series of raids were conducted on the official and residential premises of the company directors, besides other suspects. The searches carried out in Delhi, Haryana and Punjab led to seizure of documents related to deposits from general public and diversion/mis-utilisation of funds. We have also come across evidence indicating benami properties in and abroad. Some investments made in Australia are also under scrutiny,” the CBI official said. The official said searches were also conducted on the premises of directors Harcharan Singh, C.B. Dhillon, Premchand, Gurmeet Singh and Subrato Bhattacharya.