Raj Kundra grilled on trade, GainBitcoin

Businessman and actor Shilpa Shetty’s husband Raj Kundra have been summoned by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the Bitcoin scam. Kundra is presently being questioned in Mumbai. The ED is recording Kundra’s statement.

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The Enforcement Directorate today questioned Raj Kundra, husband of actor Shilpa Shetty, in connection with a money laundering probe related to a bitcoin transactions case, officials said. The businessman was summoned at the ED office in Mumbai and was asked questions about his involvement in the trade, termed as illegal by the government, they said. There are some instances of the case that are linked to Kundra and hence, he has been asked to record his statement, the officials said without elaborating. The Enforcement Directorate sometime back, had registered a criminal case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act against bitcoin-based investment website GainBitcoin, its founder Amit Bhardwaj and eight others.

Fiscal irregularities are of the tune and is alleged that about 8,000 investors lost about Rs 2,000 crore by transacting in this scheme. The ED had filed its case based on an FIR of the Maharashtra Police in this case and the Pune Police arrested Bhardwaj and his brother Vivek from Delhi earlier. Bhardwaj reportedly was behind ventures like GainBitcoin, GBMiners, MCAP and GB21, and the investors were allegedly duped after transactions on these portals.

Last year, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had informed Parliament that there are no regulations governing virtual currencies in India and the RBI has not given any licence to any entity/company to operate such currencies. The government had also cautioned investors to be wary of virtual currencies such as bitcoin, saying they are like Ponzi schemes with no legal tender and protection. — PTI

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