ED names promoters in charge-sheet filed in Agri Gold Ponzi scheme

The case became sensational in 2014-15 in the East and West Godavari districts in AP, from where the most number of people deposited money.

BySouth First Desk

Published Sep 06, 2023 | 7:40 PMUpdatedSep 06, 2023 | 7:40 PM


The names of Agri Gold promoters AV Rama Rao, Seshanaryana Rao, and Hemasundara Varaprasad were mentioned in the charge sheet along with 11 other associated companies when the Enforcement Directorate (ED) filed it at a court in Nampally in Hyderabad on Wednesday, 6 September.

The court also issued a summons to the promoters and company representatives asking them to appear before it on 3 October.

Agri Gold allegedly duped as many as 32 lakh depositors to the tune of ₹6,380 crore, and properties worth ₹4,141 crore belonging to the company have already been attached.

The interstate scam was probed by Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh separately in addition to the ED. The ED is probing the charges of money laundering in the scheme.

Also read: AP CID warns Margadarsi subscribers of possible financial collapse

The alleged scam

The company allegedly duped depositors by assuring them of huge returns for their investments. It also wooed depositors with promises of more returns if they got more people to join the scheme — the very method Charles Ponzi used in what became known as the first Ponzi scheme.

After collecting huge amounts from depositors, who expected high returns hoping that it would help them fund the marriage of their daughters or children’s studies, the company allegedly left them in the lurch and downed its shutters.

The case became sensational in 2014-15 in the East and West Godavari districts in Andhra Pradesh, from where the maximum number of people deposited their money with the company.

The company’s agents bore the maximum brunt after the company downed its shutters as depositors held them responsible for returning the deposited money.

Sources said one of the main reasons the company suffered a blow was that it allegedly invested the money collected from depositors in the real-estate business in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

As the money was blocked in the real-estate business, the company could not repay the returns the depositors were promised.

Several depositors under the aegis of the Agrigold Depositors and Agents Welfare Association are still fighting for justice, hoping that the government would return their hard-earned money by selling the company’s properties attached by the probe agencies.