Indian authorities are starting to arrest people involved with the financial scandal that has embroiled Malvinder and Shivinder Singh, Sunil Godhwani, and Gurinder Singh Dhillon, plus the Dhillon family, in a tangled web of fraud.
Shivinder Mohan Singh, the erstwhile promoter of Religare Enterprises Limited (REL) was on Thursday arrested by the Economic Offences Wing (EoW) of the Delhi police, along with Sunil Godhwani, former chief of REL, among others following a complaint of misappropriation of funds of Religare Finvest Ltd, the lending arm of REL.
Malvinder Mohan Singh, the elder brother was not in Delhi and could not be arrested. It is learnt that a lookout notice has been issued against him. Both Malvinder and Shivinder were raided by the Enforcement Directorate in August this year. The brothers have been accused by Religare Finvest of fraud and misappropriation of funds to the tune of Rs. 740 crore.
In December, a criminal complaint was filed by RFL with EoW against the Singh brothers, following which a case was filed against the brothers in May this year.
The Singh brothers are relatives of the Radha Soami Satsang Beas guru, Gurinder Singh Dhillon. Malvinder has alleged that Dhillon and Godhwani conspired to siphon funds out of companies the Singh brothers controlled at the time along with Godhwani -- who reportedly was the guru's right hand man and managed the finances of RSSB. (The "Dera" is RSSB headquarters in the Punjab.)
Here's a description of his role from a Bloomberg story posted on the RSSB web site:
- Sunil Godhwani: The money man. Said to have been friends with the Dhillon family since childhood and to have grown up in the dera itself, Godhwani was managing the finances of the dera.
Further, the fraudulent funds apparently ended up in the pockets of Dhillon, his family, and close associates. In a separate legal matter, the Dhillon family and others have been ordered to pay back $842 million that, obviously, they aren't entitled to.
What happens next is unclear, but it's interesting to speculate. It's well known that authorities typically work their way up a fraudulent/criminal "food chain" by arresting and interrogating lower level people first, the goal being to get these people to implicate higher-ups.
There's no way to know if that is what is happening in this case. It sure seems possible, though. So in my opinion, Gurinder Singh Dhillon and his family should be more worried today than they were yesterday about their legal culpability.