Companies

Goodwin Jewellers’ new voice message promises of repaying investors

Rajesh Kurup Mumbai | Updated on October 31, 2019 Published on October 31, 2019

Goodwin Jeweller outlets were shutdown without any intimation to the customers who have invested their money to buy gold. File photo

The message states that if cases are being filed, it would take about 3-4 years to settle the issue

A new voice message doing rounds on WhatsApp has promised of repaying all the investors of troubled Goodwin Jewellers, whose customers were left in a lurch after its promoters allegedly fled with crores of rupees.

The promoters have a “lot of property” and they will repay the investors even if they have to sell these, according to the 1.12-minute-long audio clip.

The message, circulated among depositors and staff, also states that if (police) cases are being filed, it would take about 3-4 years to settle the issue.

The promoters are planning to settle the issue “much before” that, it said, adding it would take at least a month before the showrooms could be reopened. The showrooms could be reopened only after getting court approvals, it added.

The message blamed competition for its troubles. It also said that customers have proofs of the investments (documents), and many people were filing cases considering the safety of their investments.

The staff is not responsible (for repayment) and the entire onus lies with the promoters. If the promoters are arrested now, it would be difficult to repay the investors, it said, stating this was the reason for promoters still being in hiding.

The jewellery chain had employed a number of agents, mostly women, to canvas investments under various Fixed Deposit (FD) schemes that promised an interest rate of about 16 per cent and investment schemes wherein customers could buy gold at a later date.

After it shut shop across Maharashtra and Kerala, investors were reaching out to agents and staff in an attempt to recover their investments. FIRs were filed against the owners at Dombivli, Naupada in Thane, Palghar and Vashi among others accusing them of cheating and criminal breach of trust.

The firm's owners and whole-time directors A M Sunilkumar and A M Sudheeshkumar, also brothers hailing from Thrissur in Kerala, have been absconding since last week.

The identity of the person behind the voice message, which was in Malayalam as most depositors are from Kerala, could not be immediately ascertained.An agent with Goodwin Jewellers told BusinessLine it didn't sound like any of the promoters.  BusinessLine is in possession of a copy of the WhatsApp message.

Read: Goodwin Jewellers depositors file complaints at Vashi’s APMC Police Station

In an earlier WhatsApp video message, the owner-brothers of Goodwin said that the investors’ money was “safe” and said that they have not fled the country.

The case was handed over to the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), Thane, on Tuesday.

Also read: Goodwin Jewellers case: EoW to take over investigation

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Published on October 31, 2019
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