Surat is fast becoming Chicago of India. No not in a positive way, but Chicago was called crime capital of USA during post WW2 industrial revolution. Likewise Surat has become centre of both blue as well as white collar crime lately.
Surat has been in the eye of a controversial storm in Rakesh Asthana shenanigans. The latest in illustrious list of funny frauds is the much publicised 600 cars in bonus to workers by a Surat businessman that even PM Modi joined via video conference and plastered all over media.
A Surat based diamond merchant Savjibhai Dholakia gave away shining new cars and flats as bonuses for Diwali to his 600 employees, mostly diamond polishers working for ‘Hare Krishna Exports’. The ceremony of giving car keys wa addressed by PM Modi by video conferencing alongside religious leaders like Morari Bapu and Ramesh Oza (Ambani family’s family Guru). All these great personalities heaped praises on Dholakia for this grand gesture towards his employees. But, turns out, the truth is something very different.
According to investigations, the employees of Hare Krishna Exports are paid their salaries under the cost to company (CTC) rule. Which means it is pre-decided that how much each employee would receive as a salary in a year. Every month, a specific amount is deducted from the salaries of employees as part of CTC under head of bonus. This lump sum amount is then paid to the automobile firm as a down payment for the car that is supposed to be ‘gifted’ to the employee. Hence, the claim that Dholakia gave away cars as bonus to his employees turned out to be half true.
As a matter of fact, all the 600 cars bought for the employees have been registered under the name of Dholakia’s firm. Those employees, who were selected to receive the cars, were made to sign a bond for a period of five years. The employees can not leave their jobs at the firm for the next five years and will also have to share the burden of at least half the monthly instalments to be paid for the cars. It is also revealed that because the firm bought these vehicles in bulk, they’ve received a discount of Rs 80,000 on each car. As all the 600 cars are registered in the firm’s name and paid the GST for it, it will receive the tax credit for the same.
Dholakia has been successfully creating an image of a generous boss who loves his workers (rings a bell about someone similar) who had no clue that the grand bonuses doled out to them is actually their own hard earned money. Even PM Modi failed to notice that the diamond trader got him to give an impetus to his (Dholakia’s) goodwill by making him address the firm’s employees. When Dholakia was asked about this. he flew into a rage and said that this is an attempt at maligning his image, while national and international media have been praising his employee welfare initiative. He further claimed that his company would be paying the full cost of the cars gifted to his employees.
In 2017, Dholakia’s firm was slapped with a huge fine for failing to deposit the provident fund deducted from the salaries of his employees to the government.