Rahul Dravid, Saina Nehwal, Prakash Padukone duped of crores of rupees by Bangalore-based firm

Former India cricketer Rahul Dravid, badminton ace Saina Nehwal and legend Prakash Padukone are among over the 800 people who have been duped of crores of rupees, police said on Tuesday.

News18.com reported that Vikram Investment Company had duped over 800 people, including celebrities from the field of art, cinema, sports, politics and commerce, after luring them into a Ponzi scheme with lucrative annual investment returns.

File image of India U-19 coach Rahul Dravid. AFP

File image of India U-19 coach Rahul Dravid. AFP

The fraud was exposed when PR Balaji, owner of the Balaji Agarbathi Company, filed a complaint against Vikram Investment and its administrators. The accused include Raghavendra Shrinath, agents Sutram Suresh, Narasimhamurthy KC Nagaraj and Prahlad, who have been subsequently arrested by the Banashankari Police, according to Asianet Newsable.

According to the The Times of India, Dravid and wife Vijeta, brother Vijay and Vijay's wife, Bhavana Rao, had invested Rs 35 crore but only received Rs 20 crore in return. Meanwhile, Nehwal received Rs 75 lakh on an investment of around Rs 1.5 crore, the report said.

Former Karnataka cricketer Avinash Vaidya has been also reportedly duped by the firm.

The report further adds that the police has registered close to 160 complaints against Vikram Investments by Tuesday.

However, none of the sporting celebrities have lodged a complaint against the accused.

Speaking to The Times of India, a police officer said, "Not one of these high-profile investors has yet complained to us about cheating. We learnt about these celebrity investments during our interrogation of the main accused, Raghavendra Srinath and Sutram Suresh, one of his wealth managers."

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Updated Date: Mar 14, 2018 19:59:23 IST

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