Call money lenders flee to other states as Andhra police cracks down
Call money lenders flee to other states as Andhra police cracks down

Call money lenders flee to other states as Andhra police cracks down

In another development, the state plans to issue notices to media houses to share information on lenders

The state crackdown on call money lenders might be working as reports suggest that many lenders have fled to Telangana, Tamil Nadu and other neighbouring states and switched off their phones.

"In some colonies, known for money lending business, many houses were seen locked for the last few days. Money lending business goes by many names, and some of the popular ones are ‘giri giri’, ‘thandal’, ‘rojuvari cheti badulu’, ‘vaddila vyaparam’ and ‘call money’. The organisers collect different interest rates in different areas,'" a moneylender of Bhimavaram in West Godavari district tells The Hindu.

"Majority of the moneylenders fled from the city since the call money racket came to light," a trader B. Viswanatham of Amalapuram in East Godavari district told the newspaper.

The call money racket, involves gangs, giving loans to innocent women at very high interest rates and threatening and coercing them into handing over their house or land when they are unable to repay the money on time. In some instances, the gangs also allegedly force the women into the sex trade to repay the money.

The gangs also lend money to traders and other people as well at interest rates as high as 300 percent.

The Andhra Pradesh government has ordered a judicial probe since then and even announced that special courts will be formed to speed up the prosecution in the call money racket. 

In another development, the state government plans to issue notices to media houses which telecast and published reports related to the call money scam and harassment of women borrowers to share information so that action can be taken against such unscrupulous money lenders.

Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, while saying that the media highlighted a lot of individual cases with victims, added "I have asked police to give notices to all such media houses who telecast/published such reports for documentary evidence to act against the culprits. No one will be spared."

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