Mumbai: Gym members of Borivli ensure owner who fled with Rs 9.7 lakh is arrested
Relentlessly bombard cops with tweets, forcing them to act; co-owner on the run
Grish Mahatre, the owner of Vinipul Fitness Centre in Borivli, who allegedly fled in January after duping more than 200 members of R 9.7 lakh, was arrested on Friday thanks to the relentless follow-up by the member he allegedly cheated. Co-owner Jyotsna Mahatre, however, is still on the run.
"We arrested Girish on Friday night and produced him in court on Saturday. He has been remanded in police custody till July 16," said an officer from Borivli police station.
Grish and Jyotsna collected annual fees from more than 200 people and allegedly fled on January 29 after shutting the gym on the pretext of repair work. When the gym remained shut for almost three months, the members filed a police complaint in April. The Borivli police had booked the duo for cheating.
The gym members
More than 25 victims of the fraud were present in court for the remand hearing on Saturday, said the police. "Police need to arrest Jyotsna, too. We want a public apology as she had used abusive language with one member. Both should be jailed," said Pawan Verma, a member.
Another member, Jitendra Shah, said, "I finally feel like I'm on the verge of getting justice. Non-stop tweets to the Mumbai Police helped put the owner behind bars. We had to take the help of social media as police officials kept delaying the arrest. I am still disappointed that one of the main culprits who even abused an ex-armyman has not been arrested yet."
"This is a big achievement. It's a collective effort of all the members, particularly Pavan Verma – another victim of the fraud – who made us aware about the process in the case and kept our hope for justice alive," said Bhavin Majithia. Another member, Sonia R Punjabi, said the members should get a refund as soon as possible. She also demanded compensation "for causing us mental agony."
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