It appears Nirav Modi and Vijay Mallya are not the only fraudsters who have successfully managed to flee the country. Since 2015, there are hundreds of cases of financial scams registered with the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), Mumbai. According to information obtained by activist Jeetendra Ghadge through RTI request, 184 of the people accused in those scams are absconding.
The EOW usually looks into high-profile swindlers because it investigates scams only over Rs 50 lakh. The total amount involved in cases for last three years are: Rs 5,560 crore in 2015, Rs 4,273 crore in 2016, and in 2017, it is 9,835 crore. In all, it is a whopping Rs 19,668 crore in three years. However, the refund investors have received from EOW stands at an abysmal Rs 2.5 crore among 74 investors.
Ghadge said the main reason behind sluggish investigations is “the political intervention, corruption, short staff and lack of expert officers who can investigate complex financial frauds.” The same RTI information notes there are 79 vacant posts of PSI in the EOW.
"There seems to be a tsunami of financial fraud in this country mainly because these fraudsters have no fear of the law,” said Ghadge. “With some political influence and by bribing officials, an accused can easily get away. We cannot blame the EOW or CBI, the government is ultimately responsible for not fixing the law and order machinery.”
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