Thursday, February 9, 2023

Allahabad HC grants bail to man accused of cheating, embezzling investors of Rs 3.8 crore through fake company

This is the third bail application of the applicant. The bail application has been filed by the applicant seeking enlargement on bail in Case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 120-B, 408, and 411 IPC, Police Station Kalyanpur, District Kanpur Nagar. 

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The Allahabad High Court has granted conditional bail to Sumit Awasthi, accused of cheating and embezzling Rs 3.8 crore from investors through a fake company. The accused/applicant was an employee in Biomass Research and Technical Solution Private Limited, which manufactures of food supplements for poultry farms, since 2005.

The single-judge bench of Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav noted,

“If an accused in another FIR leveling similar allegations had been enlarged on bail by Supreme Court and details in this regard are given about the alleged bail orders mentioning the date of the orders, the bail application number, then, of course, it could be argued that there is the likelihood of the applicant being released on bail because it is the normal practice of most Courts that if an accused had already been granted bail in other similar matters having similar contents of FIRs, then the applicant should ordinarily be granted bail.”

Counsel appearing on behalf of the applicant submitted that the applicant is innocent and has been falsely implicated in the case due to ulterior motives. In another similar matter, against the bail rejection order dated November 27, 2018 passed in Criminal Misc Bail Application (Sumit Awasthi vs. State of UP), in respect of applicant, arising out of Case under Sections 408, 420, 467, 468, 471 IPC and 63 Copyright Act and 68/69 of Trade Mark Act at Police Station Kotwali District Kanpur Nagar, the applicant Sumit Awasthi approached before Supreme Court by filing Special Leave Petition (Criminal), which was disposed of order dated August 17, 2021 granting bail to him. 

Counsel for the applicant has further submitted that since in similar matters, the applicant has already been enlarged on bail by the Supreme Court, the applicant is also entitled for bail in the case.

Several other submissions in order to demonstrate the falsity of the allegations made against the applicant have also been placed forth before the Court. The circumstances which, according to the counsel, led to the false implication of the accused have also been touched upon at length.

It has been assured on behalf of the applicant that he is ready to cooperate with the process of law and shall faithfully make himself  available before the court whenever required. The applicant has been in jail since July 19, 2016.

On the other hand, Additional Government Advocate as well as Tanya Makker, Advocate holding brief of Malay Prasad, counsel for the informant opposed the application for bail and has submitted that it is a clear case of cheating and fraud committed by applicant along   with other co¬accused persons, who have embezzled huge money of investors.

She has further submitted that the applicant not only committed the present offence, but he is also involved in other cases of the same nature of offences and several other criminal cases have also been registered against the applicant as well as other co-accused persons.

She has further submitted that bail granted to the applicant by Supreme Court in some other criminal cases, which is in connection with Case, cannot be a ground to enlarge the applicant on bail in the matter, and as such, the bail application may be rejected.

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The bench observed,

“After perusing the record in the light of the submissions made at the bar and after taking an overall view of all the facts and circumstances of the case, the nature of evidence, the period of detention already undergone, the unlikelihood of early conclusion of the trial and also the absence of any convincing material to indicate the possibility of tampering with the evidence and also seeing the fact that in similar matters the Supreme Court has already been granted bail to the applicant Sumit Awasthi order dated August 17, 2021, the Court is of the view that the applicant may be enlarged on bail.”

This is the third bail application of the applicant. The bail application has been filed by the applicant seeking enlargement on bail in Case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 120-B, 408, and 411 IPC, Police Station Kalyanpur, District Kanpur Nagar. 

It is alleged that traders of different States paid substantial money through cash and cheques. The applicant collected the cheques and cash in lieu of goods supplied by the company to the customers. The cheques and cash amounts collected by the applicant, instead of being deposited in the account of aforesaid company, deposited the money in the account of another firm, namely, M/S Biomass Research and Technical Solution opened by the applicant.

The applicant Sumit Awasthi in collusion with his brother in law constituted another firm for supply of similar products in the name and style of ‘M/s Biomass Research and Technical Solution’ by removing only the words ‘Private Limited’. The money received from different firms was deposited in this account. Some money was thereafter transferred in the joint account of the applicant & his mother Ramwati. 

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