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After EOW, now ED books production house for ‘cheating’

Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd fabricated documents of agreements with firms, did not fulfill the terms and conditions of agreements and also siphoned off Rs 444.53 crore to Dubai

| Mumbai | Published: October 30, 2014 4:11:37 am

Production house Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd, which was already being investigated by the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police Crime Branch for allegedly cheating shareholders, has now come under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate (ED). The agency recently registered a case against the company for allegedly cheating share holders to the tune of approximately Rs 824.68 crore.

“We have registered a case against Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Limited for violation of the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA),” said a senior ED official.

On July 29, the EOW booked eight of its directors for an alleged fraud of Rs 824.68 crore based on a complaint by Tejpal Shah, a film distributor.

While three of the directors — Rupen Narendra Amlani, Dhaval Vinod Jatania and Nishant K.Mahidhar — have applied for an anticipatory bail, four, including Dhillan Harshad Mehta, Hiren Jitendra Gandhi, Ashok Vrujlal Ladhani, Chandrakant Kanji Sachde, remain absconding.

An ED officer added, “In our preliminary inquiry, it was observed that the company formed a subsidiary firm by the name Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision FZE in Dubai in 2008. The parent company, in its annual report, showed that it gave a loan of Rs 444.53 crore to the Dubai-based subsidiary. The subsidiary company, however, made agreements with five companies, identified as Saamchira DMCC, Cashmir SA, Nesco Media and Cine vision, Riverline Holdings and Nupina global FZE of producing films.”

Examination of the documents available with the ED showed that Ashtavinayak allegedly fabricated and forged the documents of the agreements, did not fulfill the terms and conditions of the agreements and also allegedly siphoned off Rs 444.53 crore to Dubai.

“The five companies paid huge amount of money to the Dubai-based subsidiary company for the production of movies, but the production house has not made any movie so far,” read the complaint filed with the EOW, which is also being assessed by the ED.

“The company diverted Rs 444.53 crore to an overseas subsidiary Ashtavinayak Cine Vision FZE. However, our findings show that the business did not take place and the firm raised funds through foreign equity convertible bonds. We will be tracing the trail of money from Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd,” he added.

The EOW has already registered an FIR against the eight directors identified as Dhilin Harshad Mehta, Rupen Narendra Amlani, Dhaval Vinod Jatania, Hiren Jitendra Gandhi, Ashok Vrujlal Ladhani, Chandrakat Kanji Sachde, Nishant K Mahidhar and Hetal Naren Thakore, and has also issued lookout notices against four of the directors.

Hetal Naren Thakore, whose name is listed in the board of directors in company’s website, said, “I resigned from the company two years back.”

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