The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) has taken over the reins in the PanCard Clubs (PCL) investigation which is being touted as one of the greatest investment frauds. Over 50 lakh investors have been allegedly cheated of a staggering total of Rs 7,035 crore. An officer at EOW has said that a case against PCL and six of its directors has been registered under IPC and other sections of the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors (MPID), as reported by Times of India.
PCL is a Mumbai based timeshare company that came up with several schemes for hotel stays. The company promised the investors holiday packages at the hotel and investors who did not avail of this offer were promised higher returns on their investments. When one of the investors complained, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) intervened and discovered that there were multiple investment schemes being run by the company.
The SEBI barred PCL from selling its properties which the company challenged in the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) but the SEBI order was maintained. After this, PCL’s head office in Mumbai shut down.
Reports have found that most of the investors at PCL belonged to middle-class families from all around the country.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, while inaugurating the three-day Invest Karnataka event in Bangalore said that while unpredictability and vulnerability has become the norm of global economy, India has remained “relatively unimpacted” by the crises.
“The world faces a very difficult and challenging situation… In the global situation, India is being distinctively noticed,” said the Finance Minister.
He praised Karnataka for focusing on inclusive development, and added that the state is in a position to achieve 2 to 3 per cent higher growth rate as compared to the national average. He also assured the cooperation of the Central government to help Karnataka achieve the same. According to NASSCOM, Bengaluru alone attributes 38 per cent of the total revenue from IT exports of India. Karnataka’s IT exports alone amounts to $27 billion, and according to the state, has one of the fastest growing economies in the country, with 7 per cent Gross Domestic Product. He urged the government to ease laws for manufacturing sector, to further boost growth.
In its fourth edition of global investment meet, Karnataka expects to gain an investment worth one lakh crore, said a statement released by the government.
Business heads like Azim Premji, Narayana Murthy, Kumaramangalam Birla, Anil Ambani, Gautam Adani, were all present at the inauguration.