Freedom 251 ‘Ringing Bells ‘founder arrested in UP for allegations of fraud

Freedom 251 'Ringing Bells 'founder arrested in UP for allegations of fraud

Lucknow, Feb 24:The founder of the tech firm that shot to prominence by offering a $4 or Rs. 251 smartphone has been arrested on allegations of fraud, after a handset dealer accused the company of not refunding him for an unfulfilled order, the police said.

Mohit Goel, the founder of Ringing Bells, was arrested yesterday in Uttar Pradesh said Rahul Srivastav, a police spokesman in Uttar Pradesh.

The dealer said he received only Rs. 14 lakhs in new phones and cash. When he pursued Ringing Bells for a refund for the unfulfilled order, the dealer said Mr Goel and another executive at the mobile phone maker threatened to kill him and his family.

Ringing Bells could not be immediately reached for a comment.

 Mr Goel and his company made headlines last year with the “Freedom 251” smartphone, which was priced at Rs. 251 ($3.77), attracting strong demand but also widespread scepticism and scrutiny from regulators.

The founder was arrested after a dealer said he had paid Rs. 30 lakhs for an order of handsets but had received only a fraction of the order. He further said some of the phones received were defective, according to the police.