The investigation into the multi-crore real estate scam allegedly perpetrated by co-living startup Homigo Realty Pvt Ltd. has taken a new turn. Investigators say that Union Minister DV Sadananda Gowda is also a victim in the scam. According to documents accessed by TNM, Sadananda Gowda had rented out a property to Homigo, whose three founders are currently evading arrest.
TNM has accessed the 33-month lease (e-stamp paper) document between the minister and Homigo, which states that Sadananda Gowda rented his property located in Bengaluru’s HSR Layout for Rs 2,20,000 per month and a security deposit of Rs 8,00,000.
Sadananda Gowda and his office have declined to comment on the matter. Homigo has been in the news for defaulting on rents they owe to property owners since March 2019.
The company's model was such that they leased properties or apartments and sub-leased it to customers after furnishing them. The company raised funding from investors such as Mebelkart, Livspace and Chaitanya Cotha, among others.
In March, property owners asked hundreds of Homigo customers to vacate their houses overnight. While owners are losing out on their rent, Homigo customers are at risk of losing their security deposit or lease amount.
Speaking to TNM, ACP Lakshmi Narayan, the investigating officer in the case, said, “Yes, it has come to our knowledge. But so far, there has been no complaint filed by the minister or his office."
He also confirmed that the Central Crime Branch failed to make any arrests in the case. The case was transferred to the CCB by Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar.
Sources told TNM that the investigation might begin in full swing only after May 23, as some of the policemen tasked with the investigation have been deputed outside Bengaluru for election duty.