Saradha Group effect: MCA push for investor awareness

Written by feBureau | New Delhi | Updated: Apr 29 2013, 22:04pm hrs
In order to make small and medium investors aware of fraud and ponzi schemes, the ministry of corporate affairs (MCA) has kick-started a multi-media, multi-language drive using radio, internet, mobile phones and television advertising. The MCA may also seek a one-time enhanced outlay from the finance ministry to push such campaigns across the country.

The campaigns are a direct fallout of West Bengal-based Saradha Group, which is alleged to have cheated several crore worth of savings from small and medium investors.

The campaigns will focus on people in rural and semi-urban areas who are mostly prone to fall prey to dubious money-collecting schemes. In this regard, the government would soon have messages advising people against fraudulent schemes on the back of Post Office passbooks.

To reach out to larger number of people, the awareness campaign would be propagated through various regional languages besides Hindi and English, an MCA official said. The ministry is also planning to use text messaging as a tool to send out investor awareness campaigns to the public at large advising them to take informed decisions before investing their money, the official said.

From this month, we have started having tickers with messages in Hindi and English for investors on Doordarshan channel. Soon, the regional Doordarshan Kendras will be translating them into regional languages for wider reach, the official said.

The latest initiative assumes importance against the backdrop of the government cracking down on activities that defraud investors of their money in the wake of the Saradha Group scam in West Bengal.

The MCA would also partner with state-run BSNL to send out SMS alerts to the subscribers apart from audio alerts on All India Radio. Also, efforts are on to take Googles help, whereby pop ups with investor awareness messages on the internet will inform the invetors to stay away from ponzi schemes and report the matter to the state and central governments.