Educationist arrested in IMA scam

Educationist arrested in IMA scam

Umar Shariff

The Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the multi-crore I Monetary Advisory (IMA) scam has arrested the owner of Al Basheer International School near Bannerghatta Road.

A senior officer from SIT said that Umar Shariff (42) was arrested on Thursday. He is a social activist and an educationist.

SIT sources said that Shariff had been promoting IMA and its now-absconding founder Mohammed Mansoor Khan's business for the past five years. In return, Shariff had received Rs 60 lakh in cash and a van worth Rs 15 lakh. Shariff managed to lure a lot of people into investing in IMA schemes over the years.

He was produced before the court and taken into custody till July 22 for further inquiry.

Shariff had posted a video on his Facebook page and on YouTube favouring Mansoor Khan. In the clip, he stated that he did not trust IMA initially, but after several discussions with Mansoor Khan, came to know more about the business and began trusting Khan. He claimed that Khan was giving investors returns for 12 years. The fact that he could not give it for the past three months did not mean that he had committed fraud. In the one-hour video, Shariff also urged investors not to "curse" Mansoor Khan as "he belongs to our own community" and hadn't done anything wrong.

Last Thursday, the SIT had arrested Haneef Afsar Azeez, a moulvi, from Bepari mosque on OPH Road in Shivajinagar. Mansoor Khan had gifted him a Rs 3-crore residential apartment at HBR Layout for winning him investors through his preaching and contacts.