The Supreme Court today granted an extension for the payment of the bail bond to Amit Bharadwaj and his brother Vivek Bharadwaj, accused of running a Bitcoin ponzi scam worth over Rs 2,100 crore.
An application was filed for extending the time for paying the bail bond as the SC had asked the brothers to deposit Rs 10 crore by October 2, 2018. So far, the brothers have managed to deposit only Rs 6 crore. The two-judge bench of Justice RF Nariman and Justice Ravindra Bhat in its hearing today, extended the deadline for depositing the remaining Rs 4 crore to 31 March, 2020, and said that no further extensions of time will be granted.
The former entrepreneur was arrested in Bangkok on March 30, 2018 and had been granted bail on medical grounds. Amit Bhardwaj is reportedly suffering from a deteriorating kidney condition. He was reportedly admitted to Apollo Hospital in Pune as he needed regular dialysis.
Last year, a number of investors had filed complaints against Amit Bhardwaj. A non-bailable warrant had been issued to arrest the accused. The complaints were registered under Sections 406, 420 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code. They had also been charged under the Information Technology Section 66 D and the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors (in Financial Establishments) Sections 3 and 4.
Zakhil Suresh, a GainBitcoin investor had also started a petition on change.org, which appealed for Bharadwaj’s arrest for alleged fraudulent schemes, was signed by thousands of people.
India has witnessed several cryptocurrency scams in the recent past. In February, the Mumbai police booked a local resident for duping $250,000 out of 12 people in an alleged cryptocurrency scam. In the same month, the Gujarat police arrested five people for running a fraudulent initial coin offering (ICO) called Bitstrades.