Paytm Chief Vijay Shekhar Sharma’s Secretary Sonia Dhawan Planned To Extort Him; Husband, Colleague Helped

New Delhi: 

Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma’s long-time secretary is among three persons arrested for allegedly trying to extort Rs 20 crore from the e-wallet giant’s founder after threatening to leak stolen personal data and information, the police said on Monday.

Sonia Dhawan, who has worked with Mr Sharma for 10 years, planned the extortion bid, according to the Noida police. Along with another Paytm employee, Devender Kumar, and her husband Rupak Jain, she had threatened to leak data and misuse information “to cause the firm loss and dent its public image,” officials said.

The three were arrested late Monday afternoon by a police team, while a fourth person in the plan is still missing. This man, Rohit Chomal, is a resident of Kolkata who allegedly made the extortion call to Mr Sharma’s brother Ajay Shekhar Sharma.

“The owner of Paytm had made a complaint with the police that their employees, a woman and her aides, had stolen some data from the company and were blackmailing him. They were demanding Rs 20 crore for not leaking it,” senior police officer Ajay Pal Sharma said.

It is not known yet what data was stolen, the police said.

Sonia Dhawan had access to his laptop, mobile phone and computer and she allegedly passed on data to the man who made the extortion call.

The three have been charged with theft, extortion, cheating, criminal breach of trust and conspiracy. They have also been charged under the Information Technology Act, the police said.

Paytm confirmed in a statement that the Noida Police have arrested three people, including one woman employee.

“The employee along with two other accomplices attempted to extort money from Vijay Shekhar Sharma on the pretext of leaking his personal data. We are standing by our colleagues till the police enquiry reaches its meaningful conclusion,” the company said.

Disclosure: Paytm’s parent company One 97 is an investor in Gadgets 360.

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