Pune: Pune police today said as the officials of Maple Group, accused of cheating people with misleading advertisement of an ultra-cheap housing project, were "not cooperating", the investigating officer had been asked to decide on making arrests based on the evidence.

Forty persons who had registered for the project have now approached the police with complaints, while the company today claimed it had refunded registration fee of 13,500 applicants. But police claimed that only 1,200 applicants had got their money back.

Deepak Sakore, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Economic Offences Wing), who is monitoring the probe, said, "Despite notices to the accused, they are still at large and not cooperating with police. So we have given instructions to the investigating officer to take the decision (of arrest) on the basis of evidence."

A day after police appealed the people who had registered for the project to come forward, 40 person approached the police and their statements were being recorded, he said. "Besides, we have received calls from over 400 people from various parts of the Pune district," the DCP said.

As per the investigation, the group had received around 20,000 applications for the houses. The company claimed that over 500 people refused to take the money back, putting their faith in the company. The corporate office of the group here saw long queues of people seeking their money back and private security guards deployed.

The company is accused of cheating people with misleading advertisement which promised one BHK flat for a mere Rs 5 lakh on the outskirts of the city under the Pradhanmantri Avas Yojana (PAMY). It also featured pictures of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and district guardian Minister Girish Bapat.