Hyderabad: Crime Investigation Department (CID) issued notice to Cherukuri Ramoji Rao, the chairman of Margadarsi Chit Fund Private Limited (MCFPL), and his daughter-in-law Cherukuri Sailaja, MD of MCFPL, in the chit fund scam.
Both of them were asked to make themselves available at their residence or office for questioning either on March 29, March 31, April 3, or April 6. Given the dates, CID asked them to inform the convenient date for questioning.
Recently, CID registered multiple FIRs against media baron Ramoji Rao and Sailaja in connection with the Margadarsi Chit Fund fraud case. Acting on complaints by the Assistant Registrars of Chits, FIRs were lodged in Visakhapatnam, Kakinada, Eluru, Vijayawada, Guntur, Palnadu, Kurnool, and Ananthapuramu.
FIRs were registered under section 120(B), 409, 420, 477(A), read with Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code, Section 5 of the Andhra Pradesh Protection of Depositors in Financial Establishments Act, 1999, and Sections 76 and 79 of the Chit Funds Act,1982.
The stamps and registration department, the regulating authority of the chit fund business, conducted inspections/searches on 37 branches of Margadarsi Chit Fund Private Limited during October/November 2022.
On March 11, the teams of the CID launched searches at the premises at the branches of Margadarsi Chit Fund Pvt Ltd in Visakhapatnam, Rajamahendravaram, Eluru, Vijayawada, Guntur, Narasaraopet, and Ananthapuramu branches. According to the CID officials, the foremen of these branches are being questioned about the alleged chit-fund fraud. All the records are being examined, and incriminating documents are being seized.
CID found several irregularities and violations of rules and regulations. It was observed that the chit-fund collections from the branches were being transferred to the corporate office. A huge money was being invested in mutual funds, which are contingent on capital markets' risks.
MCFPL has invested Rs 2 crore (amounting to 88.5% of the paid-up capital) in Ushakiron Media Private Limited (not a chit-fund business), against Section (12) of the Chit Funds Act, 1992.