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Industry leaders unite to appeal for immediate release of Yogendra Vasupal, founder of Stayzilla

Urgent need for guidelines on closure of businesses sought!

Yogendra Vasupal, Co-founder and CEO of Stayzilla, is still languishing in prison in Chennai for more than a week now. So far his bail applications have not been taken up for hearing. This has made the industry leaders rise up in protest against this unfair treatment of an entrepreneur.
The industry leaders and associations have released a joint statement urging the TN government to take immediate action and make way for a hearing of the bail plea to be done on an urgent basis.
This arrest has triggered the sentiments of numerous start-ups and entrepreneurs who are struggling to survive in the highly competitive market. While the Central Government encourages entrepreneurship and urges more start-ups to be formed to promote a boost to the economy, such incidents like this arrest are scary and are bound to make potential entrepreneurs to think twice before venturing into business. In the highly competitive scenario of e-commerce businesses, some start-ups are bound to shut their doors owing to pressures and failures. Proper guidelines have to be framed to address such closures.
However, in the case of Yogendra Vasupal, the legal system has failed him. The manner in which he was arrested or the way in which he was made to remain for more than a week before his bail plea was heard by the Special court for Metropolitan Magistrate makes one wonder whether our country is democratic at all. This harassment of the people who are supposed to uphold the law is bound to have a negative impact on budding entrepreneurs. The result would be the failure of the vision of Startup India promoted by Prime Minister Modi.
Yogendra Vasupal was arrested on criminal charges for what obviously was a civil issue. His lawyer has stated that this was to exert pressure on him. The fact to be noted here is that the company Stayzilla is still functional and in the process of restructuring its operations and revamping its business model. An arrest at such a juncture is demoralizing to all entrepreneurs. It also shows how biased the justice system is. This case could have been handled in a better way by the police. They could have called both the parties for a meeting and an intervention before hastily arresting Vasupal and imprisoning him. The way all this has played out will set a bad precedent for start-ups.
Not just Vasupal, his family has also been harassed by the vendor who has filed a case against Vasupal for cheating and defrauding him. Vasupal’s family members claim that Aditya CS of Jigzaw Advertising, the complainant had issued life threats to their kids, rape threat etc.
In such a scenario, we urge the authorities to take swift action in resolving this issue and find an amicable solution failing which entrepreneurs and the business community will lose trust and faith in the hand of the law. We are asking for special treatment, just that legal procedures are followed diligently and fairly. Such acts of harassment against the family of any accused are condemnable and deplorable and severe action has to be taken to stop that.



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