A special court, on August 21, 2017, said that keeping in view the gravity of the offence, in the alleged case of duping of 200 investors of crores of rupees, against the directors of real estate major AMR Infrastructure Ltd, it would be appropriate that the case be investigated by the deputy commissioner of police concerned of the economic offences wing (EOW). Special judge Kamini Lau’s direction came, during the hearing of a bail plea of one of the arrested directors of the real estate firm.
According to the complainants, they were induced in 2006, to invest in the project located in Greater Noida and the firm had also assured returns on the investments. The project in dispute included a mall and a residential area. During the proceedings, the court was informed by the counsel for the accused director and complainants that they were in the process of finalising a settlement. Advocate Ajay Verma, appearing for accused director Ram Chander Soni, sought bail, saying it was purely a civil dispute and that he was willing to settle the issue and ensure that the entire project was delivered to the buyers. The complainants’ counsel told the court that the total amount involved was crores of rupees.
The court, in its oral observation, made it clear that it was not inclined to grant bail to the director, till the time he returned the money of all the investors. “Keeping in view the gravity of the offence and the extent and impact on the number of investors, who have come to the court and also those who have approached various other forums, including the Delhi High Court, in company petitions, it is proper that the investigation in this case be entrusted to some senior officer to be duly supervised by the DCP himself,” it said.
The judge was also informed by the DCP, EOW, PK Mishra that a look-out circular had been issued against the other absconding directors of the firm and the agency was in the process of collecting the details of their attachable assets. The court directed that the details of the assets of the directors and the company be placed before the court on August 28, 2017, the next date of the hearing.
It also asked the DCP as to why a single FIR had been registered on the 200 complaints of investors, each one being a separate transaction, when as per law only three complaints could be clubbed in one FIR. To this, the DCP assured the court that in case there was no settlement between the investors and the builder, charge sheets would be filed separately by not clubbing more than three complaints.
The investigating officer (IO), in a report, said that till 2008, there was no construction activity at the site and when the complainants confronted the company officials, they were informed that possession would be given by the end of 2010, but they had not got possession till now. The report said according to documents supplied by the firm, it received investments of over Rs 540 crores from the investors, on the pretext of setting up a mall and a valley, among others.
The IO also said that till date the police had received 200 complaints and fresh pleas of investors were pouring in, against the company and its directors. The officer submitted that the company or the directors had not completed the project in 10 years and there was a remote possibility of it in the near future. They were neither returning the money nor giving possession to the buyers, he added.