Remember the time when you saw the ad of the so-called ‘worlds cheapest smartphone’?. Freedom 251 was claimed to be the cheapest phone ever. 70million people booked the device last year and the company failed to deliver the devices. Mohit Goel was arrested last year after he failed to deliver the 70million smartphones to the customers. He went to jail for about 6 months and now has been released.
Goel claims that he can still deliver the handsets to its respective customers if he gets support from the government. Goel claims that he can deliver all the devices by the end of March-April next year.
On Sunday, police arrested two persons after Goel filed an FIR against them for not delivering the units. The accused Jeetu and Vikas Sharma, residents of Delhi allegedly took around Rs. 3.5 crores from Ringing Bell to deliver the Freedom 251 units.
Goel said: “I paid the duo nearly Rs. 3.5 crores and in return, they cheated me and siphoned off the money and did not deliver the phone. In February, some distributors filed a case against me and I was jailed for 6 months. Now with fresh arrests, people will come to know why I failed to deliver on my promise.” Goel also stated that the government did not come to his support despite the fact that it was a Make In India and Start-up India initiative.
Now that Goel is released, he wants to continue pursuing his dream of Freedom 251. Speaking to IANS he said,” My vendors didn’t deliver the smartphones on time and I failed. Our company’s President Ashok Chadda is still languishing in jail. I need one opportunity to come clean and provide the people with the handsets.
Goel also said, “the big players today have adopted my model and are now giving smartphones for as low as Rs. 1,300 like Karbonn. The Jio model for paying Rs. 1,500 in advance for the smartphone which is similar to that of his. They have deep pockets so they can afford but why don’t people ask them how they are making smartphones so cheap?”.
The company had planned to send out 2.5 million devices before June 30 last year. Ringing bell then received a huge— over 70million registration before its payment gateway crashed.
Ringing bell announced that it delivered 5,000 units to it customers in July last year. They also said that they would be delivering 65,000 more to those who had booked the device on cash on delivery (Cod).
Goel was the arrested in February after an FIR was filed, alleging that Ringing Bells defrauded it of Rs.16 lakh. The Freedom 251 is trying to make a comeback. What are your thoughts on this?
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