CBI Arrests Ex-Karnataka Minister Roshan Baig in IMA Ponzi Scam

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Sunday arrested former Karnataka minister and ex-Congress MLA Roshan Baig in connection with the multi-crore IMA ponzi scam. He was subsequently produced in court on Sunday and sent to fourteen days judicial custody.

Baig, a disqualified MLA of the Congress, was summoned to the CBI office on Sunday morning and “based on material evidence, he has been arrested,” PTI sources said.

The I-Monetory Advisory (IMA) scam came to light in June last year when its managing director Mansoor Khan fled to Dubai leaving an audio message saying that he was going to kill himself because of corruption in the state and central government. In the audio, that was purportedly of Mansoor Khan, he also named the then Congress MLA Roshan Baig alleging the latter had taken Rs 400 crore and threatened him without returning the amount. The audio message left close to 4,000 investors panicking.

IMA had offered ‘halal investment schemes’ with huge returns to investors. The ponzi scam duped investors mostly from the Muslim community from Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

The case was handed over to a special investigation team (SIT) during the previous HD Kumaraswamy-led coalition government and transferred to the CBI in January this year by the BS Yediyurappa-led BJP government. Khan was arrested by the SIT in July last year in Delhi.

A senior IAS officer from Karnataka, Vijay Shankar, whom the CBI wanted to prosecute in the Rs 4,000-crore scam, allegedly died by suicide at his house in Bengaluru in June this year. Shankar was also arrested by the SIT last July on charges of accepting a bribe of Rs 1.5 crore from IMA’s Mansoor Khan.

The state government has opened a one-month window starting November 25 for depositors to file their claims. The scheme is said to have duped investors of Rs 4,000 crore.

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