AgriGold chairman, MD held; sent to judicial remand

AgriGold chairman, MD held; sent to judicial remand

The prime accused in the multi-crore AgriGold scam, AgriGold chairman Avva Venkata Rama Rao and managing director Avva Venkata Seshu Narayana Rao were arrested by the Crime Investigation Department (CID) sleuths here on Thursday.

The duo were produced before the Eluru district judge in-charge in the West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh on Friday.

The sessions judge Hariharanatha Sharma has sent the duo to 14 days of judicial remand. The arrests were made in connection with a case filed by Mr Venkanna Babu of Eluru in a local police station.

The state government had handed over the case to the CID some two years ago.
However, the arrests came in the wake of a strict warning by the high court to the CID to shed its lethargy and to take action. The high court bench had directed the CID to initiate steps and make arrests before February 12.

The CID has asked the district court for police custody enabling them to question the chairman and the MD further. But sources say the investigating agency has tried to extract information from the accused at a guest house where they were kept before taking them to the court. Following the District court directions the police took them to Eluru government hospital for medical tests and shifted them to the district prison.

Large number of victims gathered at the hospital tried to obstruct the police vehicle and tried to attack the duo. They shouted slogans demanding justice from the accused. The police used mild force to disperse the irate mob and took them to jail.

 “I will not do injustice to the depositors, each single paisa will be refunded, please believe me,” said Avva Venkata Rama Rao while speaking to the media before getting into the police van.

Meanwhile, a high court bench dealing with public interest litigation filed by the Telangana AgriGold Customers and Agents Welfare Association posted it to next week following the submission of the CID that it will file the affidavit on the arrest of the chairman and MD of AgriGold within a week.

 The three member committee appointed by the court has also convened a meeting on Friday to discuss the modalities of the auctioning Agri Gold assets.

As many as 32 lakh depositors and 8 lakh agents had lost their money by investing in Agri Gold group.

 The group had collected deposits from people of eight states including Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Odisha and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
The group owes around Rs 7,000 crore to its depositors. The three member committee has ordered e-auctioning of 20 of Agri Gold’s assets in two phases.
 The Agri Gold has submitted a list of 300 assets to the court that can be auctioned.
DH News Service

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