One of the icons of Indian cricket and former captain of the national team who won two World Cups and three ICC trophies in total, MS Dhoni has now found himself in deep trouble thanks to his previous association with tainted Amrapali real estate group as their brand ambassador.
The Supreme Court in its July 23 judgment held that Amrapali illegally diverted homebuyers’ money to several companies, including those owned by Dhoni’s wife Sakshi. As many as seven FIRs have been filed by various groups in the Economic Offence Wing of Delhi Police.
All of the FIRs name MS Dhoni as well, as they alleged that Dhoni represented himself to be a brand ambassador of Amrapali and aggressively promoted its fraudulent activities, which lured buyers to invest in the said project. “He is part of a criminal conspiracy hatched by the accused persons. Therefore, he should be added as an accused in the said FIR,” buyers alleged in their respective FIRs.
The Amrapali Group, which was founded in 2003 emerged as a well-known real estate player in Northern India by 2010 under its CMD Anil K Sharma. It floated 150 companies and diversified in education, entertainment, FMCG, infrastructure, hotels, etc. However, everything came crashing down in 2017, when it came under the scanner of the apex court for non-delivery of flays to home buyers.
The court-appointed auditors looked into the company’s account and revealed it collected thousands of crores from buyers but siphoned it off in activities other than real estate.
The court, in its July 23 judgment, ordered a series of measures, including the removal of the CMD and other directors, the appointment of a court receiver to take over the company, appointment of NBCC to complete the unfinished flats and police to further investigate the matter.
The seven buyers’ groups that have lodged FIRs from July 23 till date belongs to the residential projects such as O2 Valley, La Residentia, Silicon City, Crystal Homes, Leisure Valley, Adarsh Awas Yojna and Kingswood.
“With the impression of MS Dhoni as the legend of India cricket and Anil K Sharma as a professional builder with a degree from IIT buyers signed the agreement believing clauses of agreement as to the worst-case scenario,” the FIR said. The homebuyers said that the Amrapali group has not taken the approval of Noida authorities before launching all these products.
“In the FIRs, Anil K Sharma and the other directors have been made accused. But we have requested the investigating agency to look into the role of MS Dhoni and made him an accused as well,” one of the complainants of the FIR said.
The matter has been listed for hearing on December 2 in the Supreme Court. The Enforcement Directorate and EoW (Delhi Police) are expected to submit status reports of their investigations.
(Outlook India inputs)