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Loan Apps menace: Bankers too will be taken to task, warns AP DGP

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: Bankers, along with others, would be made liable for extortion and abetment to suicide in instances involving death by suicide of borrowers (from loan apps), Director General of Police K V Rajendranath Reddy has said.

Telecom service providers, PlayStore\AppStore hosts, besides the apps developers would also be taken to task, the DGP told a press conference here on Friday.

He said the AP Police have drawn up an action plan to curb the loan apps menace and also to educate gullible people against falling prey.

In the last few months six people committed suicide in the state due to harassment by the loan apps operators. We have registered 75 cases and arrested 71 people involved in the nefarious operations, Rajendranath said. Also, 173 apps were banned so far and a sum of Rs 10.2 crore was frozen in the bank accounts. We are first identifying the developers of these loan apps. Most of them are based in China. They are entering into an agreement with PlayStore\AppStore hosts and running the operations. The apps operators are opening bank accounts in far-off states like Rajasthan and Gujarat but operating from AP, the DGP pointed out. He said it was the responsibility of the app hosts to check how a particular mobile application was being used. He noted that were turning a blind eye to these accounts though lakhs and crores of rupees of transactions were happening. We have found out that in some cases, the apps operators were using the (current) accounts of some defunct companies. Yet, were not carrying out even basic verification. Are they not supposed to verify when a defunt account suddenly goes flush with lakhs of rupees? Rajendranath asked. To that extent, would also be made liable for abetment to suicide, extortion and other offences under the law. In some cases, money was being sent abroad using crypto currency, he said. The DGP said they would seek the help of Interpol to trace out certain apps developers and bring them to book. Rajendranath said a five-pronged action plan was being implemented to curb the loan apps menace. Asking borrowers not to panic in case of harassment by loan apps operators, the DGP wanted the victims to call police on helpline 1930 for immediate action. There is no need for anyone to resort to suicide as we will effectively take action against the unscrupulous operators as per law, Rajendranath assured.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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