High Court Rejects Stay Request in BharatPe Fraud Case Involving Ashneer Grover and Wife
Delhi High Court Denies Relief, Sets September Hearing in BharatPe Fraud Allegations
1 June 2023
Delhi High Court denies staying on the investigation against Ashneer Grover and Madhuri Jain Grover.
Notices were issued to Delhi Police and BharatPe regarding the plea to quash FIR.
Allegations of fraud amounting to ₹81 crores, including cheating and forgery.
The Delhi High Court has made a significant ruling regarding the investigation against Ashneer Grover and Madhuri Jain Grover, former employees of fintech firm BharatPe. The court refused to grant a stay on the ongoing investigation and stated that no case has been made out for such relief at this stage. However, the court issued notices to the Delhi Police and BharatPe regarding the Grovers' plea to quash the FIR. This development comes after BharatPe lodged a complaint against the couple, alleging fraud of nearly ₹81 crores. Let's delve deeper into the case and the court's decision.
Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani of the Delhi High Court denied the Grovers' request for a stay on the investigation. The court stated that the couple could explore other legal remedies available to them instead of seeking a stay. The investigation is based on an FIR filed by the Delhi Police following a complaint from BharatPe. While the court refused to stay the investigation, it did grant the Grovers' request to issue notices to the police and BharatPe regarding their plea to quash the FIR.
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The allegations against Ashneer Grover and Madhuri Jain Grover pertain to their tenure at BharatPe, with the fintech firm accusing them of involvement in a fraud amounting to ₹81 crores. The police have invoked various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including cheating, criminal breach of trust, forgery, and criminal conspiracy, in the FIR. The Grovers' legal counsel argued that the allegations were related to their authorized activities as directors of the company and did not disclose any criminality. They emphasized the couple's role in driving BharatPe's valuation to nearly ₹20,000 crores and pointed out that the company's annual report for 2021-2022 did not reflect any fraudulent activities.
The legal battle between the Grovers and BharatPe has been ongoing since their departure from the company. In addition to the FIR, BharatPe has filed a defamation suit against the Grovers in the Delhi High Court. The company accuses them of making defamatory statements against BharatPe, its co-founders, and the board. During the proceedings of the defamation suit, Grover informed the court that he had removed all alleged defamatory content from his social media accounts.
The Delhi High Court's decision to deny a stay on the investigation signifies that the court found no immediate grounds to halt the ongoing probe against Ashneer Grover and Madhuri Jain Grover. However, the court has allowed the Grovers to pursue alternative legal remedies, including filing for anticipatory bail. The court has scheduled further hearings on the matter for September 25. The case highlights the complex financial transactions and allegations of fund misappropriation, forging documents, and involvement in bogus transactions. The investigation will shed more light on the allegations, and both parties will have an opportunity to present their evidence and arguments before the court reaches a final decision.