In a significant legal development, Ashneer Grover, the co-founder of BharatPe, and his wife, Madhuri Jain Grover, have moved the Delhi High Court challenging the Look Out Circulars (LOC) issued against them. The couple faces allegations of fraud amounting to nearly ₹81 crores, as claimed by fintech firm BharatPe.
Justice Subramonium Prasad presided over the hearing and deferred the case to May 8, emphasizing that the investigation is in its early stages. The judge remarked, "It is too hot in the day for this Court to intervene now. Wait for some time. They [Delhi Police] will take some time to investigate. We will have it in May. By that time, your friends may be back. They may also make amends."
Advocate Giriraj Subramanium, representing the Grovers, argued that they have cooperated with the investigation, highlighting multiple ongoing proceedings against them. He also requested the court to consider their plea for a two-day foreign travel, which the court suggested be addressed by the concerned authorities.
The LOC against the Grovers was initiated by the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Delhi Police, acting on BharatPe's allegations. The couple, who departed BharatPe in early 2022, faced a complaint from the company in December 2022, leading to the registration of an FIR by the EOW in May 2023.
The FIR accuses them of fraud and invokes sections of the Indian Penal Code related to cheating, criminal breach of trust, forgery, and criminal conspiracy. The Grovers' plea challenging the EOW FIR is already pending before the Delhi High Court, making the legal landscape surrounding this case increasingly complex.
The court's decision to defer the hearing to May indicates a cautious approach, considering the early stage of the investigation and the multiple legal facets of the case. The Grovers await further legal proceedings as the controversy unfolds.
Author: Anushka Taraniya
News Writer, MIT ADT University