An Andheri magistrate court has passed an order to file an FIR against two leading singers - Shilpa Rao and Akriti Kakkar - for allegedly cheating a US-based businessman.
In his complaint to the court, Deep Vohra, 63, engaged in business tours, travel and Bollywood shows, stated that in February 2015 he had come to India, and Rao had approached him to discuss a business offer, after which the two singers met him at his home in Lokhandwala, Andheri.
"He gave Rao an offer to perform in the US for $6,415, and Kakkar for $10,787. They agreed to be part of the programme at Sacramento in California, which was to be scheduled between March and May 2016," the complaint added.
On May 5, 2015, he transferred the money to Rao and Kakkar's accounts. On the basis of their confirmation, Vohra also booked the venue. However, the singers allegedly ditched him, and even after several reminders, didn't show up. In January 2017, Vohra visited India to meet Rao, but she refused to see him. He then sent both of them a legal notice in February, asking for his money back.
Vohra's complaint stated that he had approached the police to register a cheating case, but they did not file one, and hence, he approached the court. In the reply he received to his notice a few days later, both singers termed the allegations "completely false", "baseless" and "concocted". The reply stated that they don't know any Vohra and never struck a deal with him. It added that they know one Farhan Hussain, a UK resident and the national promoter for events to be organised in the US, who had approached them to perform in various places across the US. According to the deal with him, the singers said, they had performed in six shows.
The reply to Vohra's notice further stated, "...it seems Vohra might have had some internal arrangement with Hussain and transferred some amount directly in the accounts of various clients on behalf of Hussain."
Magistrate Amitabh A Panchbhai, in his order passed against Rao and Kakkar on Friday, said, "Complaint reveals prima facie information relating to the committal of an offence, which is cognisable; hence, it is necessary that such offence be investigated by the police, and matter be sent for investigation to Oshiwara police station under section 156 (3) of the CrPC."
The other side
Shilpa Rao told this reporter, "An event had come our way via an event management agency, and all commitments have been fulfilled."
Akriti Kakkar added, "I have never met this guy and have not signed any contract with him. Suddenly this man has come from nowhere and sent a notice alleging that he has been cheated. He should show the copy of the contract we signed for his show."
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