HYDERABAD: The 60 instant loan apps that have now been removed by Google from their play store were all uploaded from India and not China as earlier suspected by police.
“The apps were developed in China and it was shared with Chinese nationals who supervised the business in India. They in turn used their trusted Indian associates to upload the app on the play store,’’ an investigator associated with the case in Telangana police told TOI.
Initially police suspected that the loan apps were uploaded either from China or from a foreign soil through their associates. Police sources said Google has also shared the details of persons from India who uploaded these 60 apps with Telangana police. The cops had sought removal of nearly 300 such apps from the play store.
At least six persons have so far committed suicide after being publicly humiliated and shamed. Telangana police probe led to shutting down of call centres across cities for harassing customers who missed repayment deadline by even hours. Four Chinese nationals have so far been arrested in the case.
The Chinese national Zhu Wei alias Lambo, who was arrested along with his company’s manager Nagaraju in December, used latter’s bank account to upload 30 financing apps on the play store.
Chinese had taken control
Though the accounts were opened in the name of Nagaraju, it was the Chinese nationals who took control as they were in possession of banking credentials. This trend was also observed during the investigation of online gambling cases, which is prohibited in Telangana,” said a senior officer. Officials said harassed loanees need not bother about repayment if the lender had no agreement with NBFCs.
“However, this aspect of repayment is a banking issue and people should take proper advice. The lending firms by now had already collected principal amounts, besides huge amounts in the form of penalties from large number of people by defaming and harassing them,” the officer said. “Even if there are pending recoveries, they must have recovered at least the principal amount.”