SHETTY’S TEARS … Gulf-based NRI businessman BR Shetty puts blame for his fall on staff fraud

NEWS SHETTY

MUMBAI: Gulf-based NRI businessman from Mangaluru, BR Shetty, who is back in India for the past two months and is facing serious problems for his global business empire, has in a statement put the entire blame for his present set-back on a “small group’ of his ex and present employees. Shetty alleged that these men “indulged in fraudulent activities” and caused all problems for him. Shetty also alleged that fraudulent bank accounts were created and cheques issued by these executives at NMC Health.

The NMC Health is the wide network of health-care centres in the Gulf and beyond, the main part of his business, and he says he got wind of these fraudulent activities only “very late.” Not many are willing to believe what he says now.

The former chairman of the Abu Dhabi headquartered billions-strong group said he has commissioned agencies for investigations in the financial aspects of the group and found the following irregularities. Shetty had stepped aside from direct leadership of the NMC Health in 2017, but continued on the director board for more time. In February this year, he quit the board and “escaped” to India, as he was aware as to how things would shape up against him in the UAE, say some insiders.
Shetty also ran the UAE Money Exchange, among other entities. It has branches in over 30 countries across the globe. The following are quotes from Shetty’s statement issued through his lawyers, much of which is taken with a pinch of salt by those in the know of the business operations in the Gulf:

QUOTE:
“1. The fraudulent creation and operation of bank accounts in my name including many fraudulent transfers that I neither authorised, consented to, or had any knowledge of.
“2. The fraudulent creation of loans, personal guarantees, cheques and bank transfers in my name, and using my forged signature, that I neither authorised, consented to, or had any knowledge of.
“3. The creation and set-up of companies in my name that I neither authorised, consented to, or had any knowledge of, and that were seemingly created with the express intention to commit or conceal fraud.
“4. The fraudulent creation of powers of attorney, and the misuse of existing powers of attorney, again in my name, that I that I neither authorised, consented to, or had any knowledge of.
“5. The creation and provision to me of false and misleading financial statements and information regarding the performance of some of my private companies and investments by members of my own management team.
“6. The payments of expenses using my private companies and personal bank accounts, I believe to hide the true financials of the public companies.”
Added Shetty: “The preliminary findings provided by my advisors from my own investigations indicate that serious fraud and wrongdoing appears to have taken place at NMC, Finablr PLC (‘Finablr’), as well as within some of my private companies – and against me personally. This fraud also appears to have been undertaken by a small group of current and former executives at these companies.”

“To see everything that I have strived to build over the past 45 years eroded over the course of a few short months – and mainly due to the misconduct and wrongdoing of people I put so much trust in – saddens me beyond words. It has also left my entire family in a perilous financial position. I intend to work tirelessly to clear my name and assist any authorities in getting to the truth and help them ensure that misappropriated or missing funds are returned by the perpetrators to their rightful owners.” UNQUOTE
SERIOUS PROBLEMS FOR NMC, other Shetty firms:

The Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank recently raised several charges against the NMC group and its top management executives, including Shetty, other board directors etc, and got orders from UAE central bank to freeze all accounts of the group and of several of the top functionaries, citing gross irregularities bordering on fraud. Among other things, ADCB, the main fund provider for Shetty’s group, reportedly found that the group had taken huge loans from various other sources, and kept these liabilities a secret before ADCB.
The ADCB also got UK authorities to act against Shetty and NMC, as the group has major stakes in London and elsewhere in the UK, and the company is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

END OF THE ROAD? NO, SHETTY IS SMART OPERATOR

Many believed that this was the end of the road for Shetty, but many also believe that he ran away from the UAE to escape from retribution and legal hassles. There are also those who believe the death of another NRI businessman, Joy Arakkal, who operated a string of refineries and shipping lines in the Gulf region, might have something to also with the financial deals between him and Shetty.

“Out of respect for due process and to allow the various UK and UAE authorities and investigations, including my own, to quickly expedite their mandates, I have refrained from making any extensive public statements. This restraint in speaking out has come at great personal cost to me – reputation-wise and materially. However, given my own legal and forensic investigations are now starting to produce some initial findings, and in consideration of some misleading and inaccurate allegations and claims made against me, now is the right time to do so,” Shetty said in his public statement from India, released through his lawyers in India and the UAE.

NMC Health and UAE Exchange House had a staff strength of more than 32,000. And up until mid-December, the two entities were at the top of their game.

TEARS FOR NMC and money exchange STAFF:
Stated Shetty: “My greatest regret is for the thousands of hardworking employees in the companies we established who are now enduring extreme uncertainty and hardship, especially during the current public health crisis. It pains me to see the damage caused to my business partners, shareholders and other stakeholders who we have worked with for so long. I intend to work tirelessly to clear my name and assist any authorities in getting to the truth and help them ensure that misappropriated or missing funds are returned by the perpetrators to their rightful owners.” IHN-NN

INDIA HERE AND NOW www.indiahereandnow.comemail:indianow999@gmail.com

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