Almost two weeks after news of the multi-crore IMA Jewels scam broke, some of those who had put their money in the firm staged a protest in Bengaluru on Sunday.
Over 30,000 complaints have been filed by investors in IMA Jewels who believed the promises of a good return of investment with terms that were acceptable under Islamic beliefs. But two weeks ago, the company's founder Mansoor Khan disappeared with just an audio message believed to have been recorded by him, saying he was going to commit suicide.
It is believed that Mr Khan has fled the country but it still is not know where he is. The Karnataka government has formed a Special Investigation Team to look into the fraud which is believed to run into thousands of crores. International police group Interpol has issued a blue corner notice against Mr Khan.
At the protest in Bengaluru's Freedom Park, Fatima an advocate, told NDTV, "In the name of religion, why are they collecting such heave amounts? Why is the government not taking much interest? Where is (minister) Zameer Khan? He says he is a big Muslim leader. Where is he now? We want our money back immediately because so many people are suffering. The day before Id, I met Mansoor Khan who said, 'This is orphanage money. I will return it'. Now, police say he has gone to Dubai. But he is here in Bangalore. If he has gone, Interpol is there."
Another man at the protest, Nasir Ahmed Khan, said eight members of his family had invested Rs. 50 lakh. "We are telling Mansoor Khan, 'Come back. Investors will support you. We will wait'."
The issue has become political with many Congress leasers having been close to Mr Khan. Roshan Baig, a senior party legislator, was named in the audio recording said to have been made by Mansoor Khan. Mr Baig has since been suspended from the party, but for comments he made critical of state Congress leadership after its disastrous performance in the Lok Sabha election.
The BJP in Karnataka has been demanding an investigation by the CBI, saying the state police's steps will be hampered by the fact that many Congress leaders knew Mansoor Khan.
A delegation of BJP lawmakers had also met Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi last week to raise the issue.
"Mansoor Khan should be arrested as earlier as possible. A red alert notice should be issued. I have invested all my money for my child's wedding and education. Our children's lives are spoilt," another woman protester said.