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ED provisionally attaches Raj Kundra’s assets worth ₹97.79 cr.



The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has undertaken a significant seizure of properties valued at ₹97.79 Crore in connection with a Bitcoin Ponzi scheme allegedly involving Raj Kundra, the spouse of Bollywood luminary Shilpa Shetty. Among the assets confiscated are a residential flat owned by Shetty in Juhu, Mumbai, and a residential bungalow situated in Pune. Kundra stands accused of orchestrating a fraudulent scheme leveraging Bitcoins.

This case revolves around the deceptive practice of luring investors with the promise of substantial returns while exposing them to minimal risk, a hallmark of Ponzi schemes. Rather than deploying the funds for investment purposes, perpetrators attract additional investors and use their contributions to pay earlier investors’ returns.

Prompted by complaints lodged by Maharashtra and Delhi Police against Variable Tech Private Limited and various individuals, including Amit Bhardwaj, Ajay Bhardwaj, Vivek Bhardwaj, Simpy Bhardwaj, Mahender Bhardwaj, and others, the ED’s investigation alleges that the accused amassed approximately ₹6,600 Crore in Bitcoins in 2017. Investors were allegedly enticed with the prospect of monthly returns of 10% through Bitcoin investments, while the ill-gotten gains were stashed away in obscure online wallets.

In the course of the inquiry, it surfaced that Raj Kundra received 285 Bitcoins from Amit Bhardwaj, purportedly for the establishment of a Bitcoin mining farm in Ukraine. However, the venture fell through, leaving Kundra in possession of the Bitcoins, which are currently valued at over ₹150 Crore.

It is pertinent to mention that Raj Kundra found himself embroiled in a separate legal entanglement in 2021 related to the production and dissemination of pornographic material via a subscriber-driven mobile app named ‘Hotshots’. Despite the initial arrest, he was subsequently granted bail by the Supreme Court.

The ED’s recent seizure of assets and ongoing investigation underscore the gravity of the allegations leveled against Raj Kundra and his associates implicated in the Bitcoin Ponzi scheme. The agency’s concerted efforts aim to recover defrauded funds and hold the perpetrators accountable, thereby upholding the integrity of the financial system and ensuring justice for affected investors.

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