The Central Bureau of Investigation has filed a chargesheet against two government officials in connection with a multi-crore fraudulent scheme run by Karnataka-based I Monetary Advisory, or IMA, group and its entities, PTI reported on Monday. The company has allegedly duped more than 30,000 people of Rs 5,000 crore.
CBI officials told the news agency that the chargesheet was filed last week against former village accountant Manjunath and former Assistant Commissioner of Bengaluru Urban district LC Nagaraj.
The investigating agency said in its chargesheet that the state government had directed government officials to conduct an inquiry into the alleged illegal activities of the IMA group. Following this, Nagaraj gave a clean chit to the company. BM Vijay Shankar, who was the deputy commissioner of Bengaluru Urban district at that time, accepted the report and sent it to the government without verifying it, the chargesheet said.
According to the chargesheet, Nagaraj received Rs 4.5 crore as bribe and Manjunath got Rs 10 lakh. Officials said Shanakar was not mentioned in the chargesheet as he has died.
The CBI took over the case last year after the Karnataka government requested it to do so. The investigating agency had filed a first information report against the owner of the company Mansoor Khan and 24 others. Four sister concerns of IMA were also booked in the case. Khan is currently in judicial custody.
As part of the scam, the IMA had allegedly been collecting investments for several years and assuring investors of returns of over 3% per month.
The fraud came to light after hundreds of people gathered outside the investment firm’s offices, saying it had not provided returns on their investments for more than two months. On July 8 last year, the special investigation team arrested Shankar for allegedly taking a bribe of Rs 1.5 crore from Khan.