A 28-year-old techie, who allegedly faced harassment over repayment of micro loans he availed through mobile phone applications, was found dead at his rented accommodation in Kismatpur, Hyderabad.
Preliminary investigation suggests that the techie, identified as Sunil, died by suicide.
Rajendranagar police registered a case on a complaint filed by his wife who alleged that harassment over loan repayment drove him to take the extreme step.
A native of Guntur in Andhra Pradesh, Sunil lost his job a few months ago. The software company that he worked for allegedly refused to pay two months of salary that was due to him.
“He lost his job at the software firm during the Covid-19 lockdown. Since then, he had been facing financial hardships. He started availing micro-personal loans of between Rs 2,000 and Rs 10,000 through several online apps,” G Suresh, station house officer, Rajendranagar police, said.
“He took loans through 15-20 such apps,” the SHO added.
The officer said to repay one loan the techie took another through a different app and before long, fell into a vicious debt cycle. As he failed to repay the loans, representatives of these apps accessed his phone contacts and rang up his friends and family to step up pressure on him to pay up, the SHO added.
Sunil’s wife and five-month-old son were in the living room on Wednesday afternoon when he withdrew to another room where he was later found dead, said sub-inspector D Balraj, an investigating officer in the case. His house lord helped rush him to a private hospital but he was declared dead on arrival, the officer said, adding that the police are yet to determine the total amount that he availed as loans.
Police have gathered details on the apps and their representatives and have also sought help of the cyber-crime cell to take the investigation forward.
In a similar incident in Siddipet district a day earlier, a 24-year-old agriculture extension officer ended her life by consuming pesticide after an app-based finance firm branded her a loan-defaulter and allegedly humiliated her by calling up people in her phone’s contact list.
The victim, identified as K Mounika, killed herself on Wednesday night. She had availed a loan of Rs 3 lakh and could not repay it on time. Finance minister and Siddipet MLA T Harish Rao visited the bereaved family and sought action against such apps.
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