Former managing director of BharatPe, Ashneer Grover, and his wife, Madhuri Jain, were detained by Delhi Police on Thursday night as they attempted to travel to New York. This development follows the issuance of a lookout circular by the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) earlier in the week, amid ongoing investigations into alleged financial fraud involving the couple at BharatPe.
The move comes in the wake of the EOW submitting a status report to the Delhi High Court, detailing alleged financial irregularities at BharatPe involving Grover and his family members. A lookout circular was issued for the couple as part of these investigations.
Although Grover and Jain were not arrested, they were instructed to return home and were subsequently summoned on Friday morning. Delhi Police, aiming to probe several substantial transactions revealed through scrutiny of their bank accounts, stated that the total amount involved in the purported fraud could exceed ₹81 crore.
According to a senior Delhi Police officer, the investigation found that Jain, the former head of controls at BharatPe, received significant sums from her father, mother, and brother. Additionally, Grover reportedly transferred nearly ₹46 crore from one of his accounts to his father’s account from 2019 to 2022.
To validate the authenticity and purpose of these large transactions, the police assert the need to interrogate Grover and Jain. Sindhu Pillai, Joint Commissioner of Police (EOW), mentioned that the couple was halted before the security check and instructed to return to their Delhi residence, where they are expected to join the probe at the EOW office next week.
While a lookout circular was issued to prevent their international travel, Grover and Jain have not been formally arrested. In response to queries, Grover did not provide a response.
Grover, who initiated a new venture called Third Unicorn last year, acknowledged receiving a summons from the EOW on social media platform X (formerly Twitter). He claimed not to have received any notices or calls from the EOW until 8 am on November 17, seven hours after being stopped at the airport.
Grover revealed that he learned about the lookout circular during immigration, and despite traveling abroad four times since the FIR was filed, he had not faced any issues until now. He expressed his willingness to cooperate after receiving the summons.
BharatPe had terminated Grover and Jain early last year in the wake of allegations of financial fraud. Earlier this week, it was reported that recruitment firms associated with Grover and his family had used backdated invoices to divert funds for work never performed for the fintech unicorn, according to an EOW investigation.