Rs684 Crore Fraud: Phenomenal Group Chairman Nandalal Kesar Singh Sent to Police Custody
Moneylife Digital Team 25 August 2021
Nandalal Kesar Singh, chairman of the Phenomenal group of companies, has been sent to police custody till 2 September 2021 by a court in Latur. Mr Singh, the brain behind a Rs684 crore Ponzi scam, was arrested on Sunday by Mumbai Police’s crime branch Unit VII from a city hotel.
 
Balaji Mohite, deputy superintendent of police (economic offences wing-EOW) at Latur, informed that the chairman of the Phenomenal group is wanted in several cases in the district. Mr Singh, who claims to be a businessman from Nepal, is booked under section 3 of Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors (MPID) Act, as well as under section 420, 468, 471, 409 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). He is most likely to remain in the custody of the Latur police for few more weeks.
 
Mr Singh is accused of luring people to invest in several schemes of his group companies with promises of lucrative returns. Many people from Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka and Gujarat had invested money in Phenomenal Housing Finance Ltd, Phenomenal Plantation Ltd, and Phenomenal Healthcare Services.
 
He started one of the Ponzi schemes in 2015 and lured people to invest Rs7,500 every month for three years (total Rs2.70 lakh over three years) with an assured returns of Rs8.10 lakh after nine years. Under the Phenomenal group, Mr Singh also launched several schemes including health insurance, to make people invest more in his Ponzi schemes. He has a Nepali passport.
 
 
Speaking with the media, an official from Mumbai Police says, the chairman of Phenomenal group was absconding since 2018 and was changing his location across states to evade arrest. Mr Singh had also stayed in the US and UK over the past two years, as well as in his native Dhangadhi in west Nepal. He then shifted to Noida and was staying in hotels in Mumbai and Delhi by booking it in various names, including that of his wife Asha Sonar, the official says.
 
From Nepal, Mr Singh entered India under another identity and opened a hospital in Kerala. However, here too, he cheated many people under a fake scheme for health insurance. In January 2018, the Kochi Police issued a look out notice against seven, including Mr Singh, for cheating people for about Rs120 crore. Others named in the lookout notice included, KO Rafael, TMS Nair, Sebastian Maliekkal, Binoy Rafael, Ranjan Chunnilal, and KA Jiffry.
 
Quoting the police, a report from OnManorama at that time says, "Their firm had promised health insurance cover for nine years and a return of twice the money deposited at the end of the ninth year. The police arrived at the estimated figure of Rs120 crore based on the formal complaints they received. However, the actual number of victims of the fraud is much bigger."
 
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