Bengaluru, May 13: Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers D V Sadananda Gowda on Thursday sought to know whether people in the government should hang themselves for their failure to produce vaccines as was directed by the government.

"The court has with good intention said everyone in the country should get vaccinated. I want to ask you, if the court says tomorrow that you have to give this much (of vaccine), if it has not been produced yet, should we hang ourselves?" Gowda told reporters here.

Replying to queries on the shortage of vaccine, the Union Minister stressed on the plan of action of the government and said its decisions are not guided by any political gain or by any other reason.

Gowda said the government has been doing its job sincerely and honestly during which time some shortcomings have surfaced.

"Practically, certain things which are beyond our control, can we manage it?," the Union Minister sought to know.

He, however, clarified that the government has been doing its best to ensure that in a day or two, things improve and people get vaccinated.

BJP national general secretary C T Ravi, who was present with Gowda, claimed that things would have been worse if arrangements had not been made well in time.

"If proper arrangements were not made well in advance then there would have been fatalities 10 times or 100 times more," Ravi said.

He said oxygen supply has been increased from 300 metric tonnes to 1,500 tonnes due to systematic preparation.

"But our preparations failed because of the unimaginable spread of coronavirus," Ravi told reporters.

Regarding courts pulling up the government on the issue of coronavirus, Ravi said, "Judges are not all-knowing (Sarvajna). Whatever is available with us, based on that the technical advisory committee will recommend how much (vaccine) has to be distributed. Based on their report, we will take a decision."

With the alarming rise in COVID cases in the State, which is reporting 40,000 to 50,000 cases daily, the demand for vaccines has grown manifold.

According to the Karnataka government officials, the State has placed an order of three crore vaccines and the money has already been paid to the two vaccine manufacturers.

However, only seven lakh doses have arrived in the State.

The panicked citizens have been queuing up before the vaccination centres in the State for inoculation only to be turned down.

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Bengaluru, Jun 12: Karnataka police on Saturday said they have busted a Rs 290 crore plus scam that involved duping people through a mobile app after promising attractive interest on investment and two Chinese nationals were among the nine arrested.

The scam, aided by shell companies, is linked to money laundering and the suspected kingpin is a Kerala based business man with proximity to Chinese 'hawala' operators, they said.

Cyber Crime Division of CID said it has arrested accused persons, including two Chinese nationals, two Tibetans and five others acting as directors of the companies involved, and a search is on for the rest.

A complaint from Razor pay Software Private Limited said accused persons availed 'payment solutions' from them, claiming that they are in gaming, social and e-commerce businesses.

They, however, defrauded the company by using computer resources and by deviating from their original, registered line of business, the plaint said.

They started routing their transactions to collect payments from a different business named "Powerbank", an app listed in Google Playstore, cyber police said in a release.

Through customer complaints, the complainant company got to know that public invested money in the "Powerbank" app to earn interest on the invested amount.

The accused persons, after accepting the investments, neither gave the agreed interest nor the principal amount and cheated customers.

A case was registered under the Information Technology Act and 420 IPC (Cheating), the CCD said and added that the investigating team were successful in arresting nine men.

During investigation, it was found that Anas Ahmed, a Kerala based businessman, is the main person involved.

"We have also identified that he has very proximate connections with the Chinese hawala operators, which has come to light during the course of the investigation.

He had opened shell companies in the name of Bull Finch Technologies, H & S ventures and Clifford ventures to route the fraud money. Anas Ahamed is married to Chinese national and incidentally he did his studies in China," police said in the release.

Online applications hosted by him were later camouflaged and converted into different apps including Power Bank application, seeking investment from the public and promising good returns, the CCD said.

An unusual spike was seen in investments on the day Anees Ahmed announced much higher returns.

Subsequently, such apps were removed from Google Playstore and other websites and he absconded with the money.

Investigation showed Rs 290 crore inflow into his bank accounts and the CCD was successful in freezing a significant portion of it. There was a huge spike in opening of shell companies since November 2020.

"We have also observed that the Chinese handlers are in possession of a huge number of shell companies and bank accounts. Lured by the offer of the Chinese nationals, many innocent Indians and Tibetans have fallen in their trap to open shell companies and open bank accounts for them."