Kannur Urban Nidhi bank scam: ED raids in 5 districts

Enforcement Directorate
Enforcement Directorate logo. Representational image: Onmanorama

Kannur: The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) on Monday conducted raids in multiple locations across five Kerala districts in connection with the multi-crore scam at the Kannur Urban Nidhi Limited.

"Around 150 FIRs have been registered in connection with the scam so far," Prashant Kumar, ED's Deputy Director of Kochi Zone told Onmanorama. The ED raids were conducted in Malappuram, Thrissur, Palakkad, Kannur and Kozhikode.

 A Kerala Police team, headed by Inspector P A Binu Mohan, is in charge of the investigation. District police chief Ajith Kumar said in January that the Kannur Town Police Station received around 100 complaints against the company.  They were "lured" with the promise of higher returns.

Kerala police had earlier arrested directors M Shaukat Ali  and K M Gafoor in connection with the case. Shaukat reportedly told the police that Antony Sunny, a native of Thrissur and director of ATM, a subsidiary of Kannur Urban Nidhi Limited, was behind the scam. He was arrested in January. The fourth accused P V Pratish and fifth accused C V Jina had also surrendered before the police.

Police said the company promised an interest rate of up to 12 per cent and took deposits ranging from Rs 20,000 to Rs 5 lakh, as well as fixed deposit from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 34 lakh. Initial depositors got the interest on their deposits but the company started defaulting when more depositors came in. Kannur Urban Nidhi Limited was incorporated on May 9, 2020.

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