Office-bearers of the Maharayat Agro India Private Limited Company firm have been booked by Pune City Police for allegedly cheating several farmers to the tune of crores by making them invest in ‘Kadaknath Kombdi’, a poultry business, by assuring lucrative returns. The accountant of the firm, Pritam Mane (26), has also been arrested.
A 35-year-old farmer lodged the first information report in this case at the Dattawadi police station on Tuesday. Police have booked the founder, director and accountant of the company, which has its office on the Pune-Satara Road.
Till now, police have received complaints from 67 investors, including farmers and their family members, who have been cheated to the tune of Rs 1.73 crore. Officials of the company allegedly asked the farmers to rear Kadaknath chicken, which has good demand in the market because of its high protein content. They allegedly promised to supply the birds to the farmers, along with the fodder and medical aid needed for rearing these chickens. The company allegedly promised to purchase the chickens and eggs from farmers, assuring high returns.
Hundreds of farmers from Sangli, Kolhapur, Satara and Pune invested money in this business, but didn’t get the promised returns from the company.
Police said initially, the company returned some money to the farmers, but later stopped buying the chickens and eggs from them. So, hundreds of farmers, mainly from western Maharashtra, invested in the business but lost huge amounts of money, said police. Assistant Police Inspector Shankar Salgar, who is investigating the case, said, “So far, we have received complaints from 67 people. The number of complaints and the amount of fraud is likely to increase. We have arrested Pritam Mane, the accountant. A court has remanded him to police custody till September 6 .”
Sangli Police recently arrested the company’s director, Hanmant Jagdale and Sandeep Mohite, the brother of another company director, Sudhir Mohite. Jagdale and Sandeep Mohite were remanded to police custody till September 9 by a Sangli court.