Pune: Two directors of Gagan Raisoni Vastushilpa Ventures booked in Rs 90 crore loan fraud

The economic offences wing (EOW) of the Pune police is investigating a Rs90.4-crore loan fraud allegedly committed by two directors of realty firm Gagan Raisoni Vastushilpa Ventures located on Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar Road. According to a complaint lodged by Shabana Shaikh (37) with the Kondhwa police on July 11, the two directors-Sushil Agarwal and his father, Ghansham – took loan from a New Delhi-based finance firm by mortgaging 28 flats and six shops in August 2017 in the Gagan Emerald Cooperative Housing Society without the knowledge of the owners. The complainant, who owns a flat in the project, alleged that the directors later defaulted on the loan payment. The Agarwals have, however, refuted these allegations.

Shaikh had bought the flat on August 14, 2017. The alleged fraud came to light on April 19 when representatives of the finance firm put up ‘symbolic possession’ notices on the doors of the flats and shops, much to the shock of the property owners.

On April 29, Shaikh and others had received a letter from the realty firm stating that it was taking the responsibility to free their properties. On May 23, the realty firm sent another letter and vakalatnama to property owners. The finance firm on June 23 published an advertisement in a newspaper to auction the properties.

Sushil Agarwal told TOI, “The allegations levelled in the FIR are false and baseless. The complainant and others have been misled by some politicians in the society. The finance firm has given notices to 26 flat owners, while two flats and six shops have remained unsold.”

He said, “We took the loan for developing a project in Kamshet (near Lonavla) and extended the flats and shops in Gagan Emerald to the finance firm as a collateral or additional security before they were sold to the buyers. The properties have not been mortgaged. There was no ne- ed to inform the owners about the properties extended as collateral security because we have not mortgaged the properties.”

Agarwal said, “We have mortgaged an alternative property in Patas village near Baramati to the finance firm and have requested it to with- draw the auction proceedings against the buyers in the Gagan Emerald project. However, the firm has not yet with- drawn the proceedings. An ongoing dispute between us and the finance firm is pen- ding adjudication before an arbitrator appointed by the Delhi high court.”

TOI made repeated calls to the loan recovery officer (legal and enforcement) of the New Delhi-based finance firm but he did not respond to the calls. Text messages sent by TOI to the officer also did not evoke any response till the time of going to press.

Deputy commissioner of police (EOW) Srinivas Ghadge told TOI, “As the Kondhwa police have transferred the FIR to us for investigation, we will soon appoint an investigating officer and draw up a plan of action in consultation with senior police officers.”

Complainant Shaikh said she registered the documents of her 3BHK flat with the sub- registrar’s office on June 28, 2017. She came to know that the developer had mortgaged several properties after the finance firm pasted notice on her door on April 19. “The developers have no right to sell, lease and mortgage properties to seek loan without the knowledge and consent of the property owners,” she said in the FIR.

“I want my property to be free from all legal encumbrances. We have taken a ho- me loan from the bank and re- paid it with interest. The auction proceedings are illegal,” she said.

Another buyer, Muzam- mil Shaikh, who is a fish merchant, said, “If our properties were mortgaged, how did we get a home loan? We have registered our property documents with the sub-registrar. The search report and title of the properties is clear, and it has no mention that the flats or shops were mortgaged. We were in the dark for so many years that our properties we- remortgaged.”

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