Twists and turns make Paytm data theft case murkier

Rohit Chomwal, the ‘main accused’ who the police say made the extortion calls to Paytm’s Vijay Shekhar Sharma and got some money, claims he was in fact the whistleblower in the case, and not involved in any wrongdoing. Chomwal has not been arrested yet. His lawyer said Chomwal has protection from arrest from the Allahabad High Court. The alleged mastermind and former Paytm vice-president, Sonia Dhawan, is in jail for a month, although police did not seek her custody for a single day. Police claim they have the confessions of the accused. Over a month after the Uttar Pradesh police filed a case against four people, including Dhawan and Chomwal, for their alleged involvement in an extortion plot of Rs 10 crore from Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma, the case has only turned murkier. As per the HC order of November 12, that prayer was refused saying prima facie a cognisable offence is made out and there is no ground for interference in the FIR. But the high court added that Chomwal shall not be arrested till credible evidence is not collected by the investigating officer. Trivedi said the high court’s comment on credible evidence was significant and showed the case is very complicated and not as simple as it looks. As per the police, Chomwal made the calls for extortion over WhatsApp to the Paytm founder, saying he had his personal data, and later got Rs 2,00,067 in his bank account from Sharma.

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