Almost a month after Stayzilla’s shutdown, the founder of the company Yogendra Vasupal has been taken into police custody over allegations of non-payment of dues, according to this TOI report. However, Vasupal, in a Medium post, retracted allegations stating that he and his colleagues were threatened by his landlord and that the PR agency has framed charges against him. While shuttering operations last month, Vasupal said in a statement that the company would “reboot” operations with a different business model. The company initially began operations in 2007 as budget hotel aggregator and later moved on to offer homestays, which was launched in late 2015.
The TOI report mentioned that Stayzilla defaulted in paying out Rs 1.72 crore to Jigsaw Advertising, a PR company based out of Chennai and that the founder Vasupal “confessed” to have committed fraud. Stayzilla’s COO Rupal Yogendra, however, denied the report stating that Vasupal was arrested after the complainant used money and political influence. “Now after the inappropriate article by Times of India, wondering if it has anything to do with Jig Saw Solution and Advertising owner, Mr.Aditya C.S’s dad being a part of the press and wielding his influence there also,” Rupal added.
Vasupal mentioned in the Medium post that Jigsaw’s services were ‘deficient’. “The company (Stayzilla) had a dispute over deficiency of services” provided by Jigsaw, Vasupal said, adding that the matter was later taken up legally. Aditya CS, owner of Jigsaw advertising claimed that Vasupal’s claims are false and that Stayzilla never informed it about “deficiency of services” offered to them, according to a report by TheNewsMinute.
Trouble with office premises in Bangalore
Stayzilla’s office was shut down when MediaNama visited the premises in HSR Layout Bangalore. Two people sitting inside the front entrance refused to speak to us and prevented us from taking pictures when we asked for permission. However, a person who identified himself as Satish claimed that he was the owner of the office space. He mentioned that the company and staff evacuated the office last month. He was not willing to provide any further details when we inquired. The office wore a deserted look with a Stayzilla tag hanging on the front door. The office space is a four-floored building, with tables, chairs, water dispensers, and papers lying unmoved/unattended. It was as if, the premise was evacuated in a hurry.
Note that, Vasupal also posted video proof in his Medium post claiming that his landowner (in Bangalore) threatened to shoot him and his colleague with a revolver gun over disagreements of rental payment. “Over multiple meetings he started getting even more agitated demanding immediate payment (for which he had accepted a post dated cheque of March 7th) and became violent,” Vasupal added.