Mrunal Manmay Dash

Intensifying its probe in the Rs 40 crore fraud case, Bhubaneswar Police detained a couple from Aska in Ganjam for cheating over 100 people after promising them to give new cars.

The accused have been identified as Akshay Gouda and his wife Usharani Gouda who were running a used car showroom named Maa Pattakhanda Automobiles in Bhubaneswar.

As per reports, they advertised on social media platforms and offered new cars at a 50 percent discount on the market price. Upon inquiry, the fraudsters showed fake agreements with several car showrooms in Bhubaneswar to sell their cars under clearance sale.

They asked customers to deposit a token amount of Rs 30,000 to Rs 40,000 as advance to get cars at half price of the market rate. Initially, they gave new cars to some customers with high discount to build confidence among buyers.

Later, they fled by duping people over Rs 40 crore in the market.

A complainant said, “I have paid them Rs 10 lakh for an SUV. Some of my colleagues got their cars from them, so I trusted them. They promised me delivery within a month. But after three months they started to avoid me and rejected my calls. Then they disappeared.”

“I had filed a complaint at Pahal police station. The couple returned and handed me a check of Rs 10 lakh, but that too bounced in the bank. So we spoke with the Police Commissioner and finally action has been taken and they are arrested,” he said.

The couple had another accomplice named Sivaran Gouda who is absconding.

The victims of the fraud have lodged several complaints at Pahala, Nayapalli, Khandagiri, Laxmisagar, Badagada and Capital police stations in Bhubaneswar.

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