Undeterred by the police probe into app-based loan finance companies, the diabolic loan recovery calls made to customers are eventually forcing them to end their lives. On Saturday, G. Chandra Mohan , 36, supervisor of a private warehouse, committed suicide at his residence at Gundla Pochamma village of Pet-Basheerabad in Medchal-Malkajgiri district, about 30 km from Hyderabad. This is the fifth “forced suicide” by these companies existing only as mobile applications.
Cyberabad Commissioner of Police V.C. Sajjanar said that the victim took a loan from one such company a few weeks ago and to repay the amount before the deadline of one week, he took loans from other unauthorised apps available on Google Playstore.
“He took around ₹70,000 from at least nine such apps and failed to repay, as a result the lenders branded him as a defaulter and began calling him over phone and threatening him repeatedly,” he said. The firms also phoned and sent messages to his relatives and friends to defame him, as a result Chandra Mohan resorted to the extreme step.
Telangana police have identified at least 180 ‘unauthorised’ instant loan apps and at least 30 people, including four Chinese nationals. They have been arrested from Hyderabad, Cyberabad, Rachakonda and Warangal Commissionerates. Two sons of a police officer in Kurnool were said to be kingpins in floating a few of these apps at the behest of Chinese entrepreneurs.
“We wrote to Google to take down these apps whose operations are illegal,” Mr. Sajjanar said.
(Hyderabad-based suicide intervention centre Roshni cab be reached at +914066202000 or 6666 1117)