KABUL (Pajhwok): QNET Company continues to function in capital Kabul despite being banned by the Ministry of Interior (MoI) last year and arrested some of its workers.
Incepted in Hong Kong last year by a Malaysian businessman, the company offers services in different fields such as health, travel, watches, medical care, technology, energy and other areas of business.
According to a report from the MoI, last year 25 employees of the company were arrested over encouraging the youth how to earn more money. The company was accused of deceiving youth and thus the MoI raided its office and arrested 25 of its employees and seized office equipment.
Pajhwok findings show that QNET is an unregistered company with its central office in Shahr-e-Naw locality and regional offices in other parts of Kabul city. The company is functioning illegally and recruits youth daily offering them the easiest ways to earn money and quickly become well-off.
Some youth told Pajhwok Afghan News they visited the company to get job and money, but after some times when the company received membership fee from them, they realized that the company was deceiving them and the only purpose was snatching money from youth.
Inside QNET Office:
As part of developing the report, Pajhwok reporter visited QNET Dasht-e-Barchi branch situated on the third floor of a four-storey building. The fourth flour is allocated for women.
Besides QNET office, Dr. Mohammad JavedKarimi’s clinic and Arya Group Engineering services department is also functioning but there is no plague in the building under the name of QNET office.
An employee of the clinic and a shopkeeper in the area told Pajhwok Afghan News a business company was functioning in the budding but nobody knew what services the company offered.
Four people — three girls and one boy — arrived in the building to visit QNET Company, but in the learning section of QNET Company, 10 people, mostly from provinces, were busy learning.
The branch in-charge Mohammad Qasim was speaking with the visitors and briefed them about the company’s services in the marketing section. He also provided information to the visiting applicants about the marketing and membership of the company.
He said besides 200 branches in different parts of Kabul, QNET has branches in Herat province as well.
He said QNET is member of QI Company which was incepted in Hong Kong in 1998. After expansion in Asia, it has converted into network marketing for large companies in Asia. It has now 52 companies in different countries.
He said individuals getting membership of this company are offered training in tourism, education, use of medical make up equipment, selling of wrest watches for one week and later the practical work begins. The company ensures to introduce new and reliable persons to the marketing branch of the company.
He said: “When you come to the company and pick the field of your choice, the company offers TC bank account. The account has two angles, right and left. You pick two trusted persons for the right and left position — means every membership holder should introduce two more reliable persons. They can also introduce two more persons after getting TC account and introduce more people.”
According to Qasim every individual who introduces two people to the company, he gets $200 and the process goes on by introducing more people until one person becomes team leader. The limit for becoming team leader is introducing 16 people.
He said team leader gets weekly $6,700 and monthly $27,200 and this is a huge amount.
Newcomers in quest of earning money
ArastaRezae, who recently came from Herat province to find a job, said. “From the past one year I am looking for a job but could not find one. Finally a friend introduced me to this company.”
She said she got necessary training from this company and she totally believed it. “Initially I was doubtful. I thought this company is deceiving people, and then I came here and got training in network marketing. Now I have total confidence that this company serves people.”
She said QNET Company is registered with the Ministry of Trade and Commerce and pays tax to the Ministry of Finance.
Arasta gave $2,000 to QNET Company in order to earn more money and go abroad. She added the company had pledged by introducing two more people she would be given $200 and other privileges.
Sakeena from Bamyan province and a professional midwife said due to unemployment she had no other option but to join QNET.
She said company officials told her: “Individual who gets the membership of QNET has the right to reconsider his/her decision within 15 days. If an individual decides not to work with the company he/she should leave without refunding his membership fee.”
When asked why she got the membership of the company she said: “To earn more money and have a bright future I came and got the membership of this company.”
Sakeena said she was introduced to the company by a friend. “I was told a foreign company is there with huge revenue and provides more money in little time.”
Suhaila Karimi, a graduate of Herat Science Faculty, said: “Las year my friend introduced me to this company to find work and money. I was just graduated from university and was in search of work so I accepted the offer happily.” She said after paying 9,000 afs I got the membership of this company in Herat.
“After getting training I was offered some packages and I chose one in which I had to introduce one person. By introducing one person four dollars are added to my account and by not introducing a person three dollars added to my account. This is what I was told so I was very happy.”
“I was told that when your account balance reaches $50, you can get it but unfortunately for four months nothing was added to my account. When I complained I was told that there is some problem with the system. Another four months gone and now nearly one year has passed but nothing is added to my account.”
She said some of her friends are still members of the company who have no way to leave or stay because they made huge investment in the company and was compelled to recruit more people through advertisement.
QNET also published its advertisements under the title of ‘Creating jobs for unemployed youths’ in its Facebook page targeting Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, SakinaMubariz, who registered with QNET’s branch in ShahidMazari Square in Kabul two years ago? Said that she was introduced to the organization by her trustable friends.
She said that she paid 100,000 afghanis to the organization for what she was offered including travel packages of Turkey, China, Europe and US, where the QNET claims has branches.
“They did not tell me earlier that I cannot become a leader or an officer, or take advantage of the package if I do not introduce 16 more people, they in the beginning told us that we along with five of our family members can travel to any country by obtaining this package,” Mubariz added.
Regretting her registration with QNET, Mubariz said, “My family was unaware, I borrowed the money from my friends, now I regret, but I can do nothing now, they took 100,000 afghanis from me. I disputed with LedriNajibaand and asked her to give my money back, I told her that I do not want to work, but she told me that it is impossible for her to give my money back.”
She said that those people who get membership of the organization were motivated that they will become wealthy in a short period of time, but all these statements were decieving.
Mubariz said that they were told to encourage other people to get membership of QNET and anyone introducing a new person to the organization, their accounts would be deposited with money.
BaqirMathari, a resident of Dasht-i-Barchi area of Kabul and a teacher in an education course, said that his brother who was jobless paid 30,000 afghanis as membership fee to QNET two years ago, and in return he obtained some cosmetics such as a watch and a bag for sale.
He said that the price of products his brother received from the organization was higher compared to the market rates and his brother suffered loss in the deal.
Mathari asked security officials to stop the activities of the organization as it misused joblessness of youths and deceived them.
QaisMohammadi, a lecturer in a private university in Kabul and an economist, said that there were many companies and organizations such as QNET that misused unemployment of youths and deceived them.
“Unfortunately many youths have no income source, they are jobless and easily believe and are deceived, youths should not be deceived by these companies, because there is no easy way to become rich by introducing a few people to an entity,” he said.
He said that many other youths may be deceived by similar companies if immediate steps were not taken on the matter.
Kabul police spokesman, FerdausFaramarz, told Pajhwok that they also received complaints about QNET two years ago and as a result, 35 workers of the company were arrested and referred to judicial organs.
In response to a question about hidden activities of the company, he said, “If people complain about the matter, police would take urgent steps; we do not allow activities of companies that deceive people.”
About the cases of detained figures, he said that the Attorney General Office should provide information on the regard.
A document obtained by Pajhwok from AGO shows that the cases of 40 workers of the company have been finalized.
The document shows that 39 of the detained people were sentenced to one and a half years in jail and one to one year and one month imprisonment.
This comes as QNET is also not registered with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
FawadAhmadi, spokesperson of the ministry, also confirmed that the company was not registered with them.
However, he did not provide further details on the regard.
Abdul Fattah AshratAhmadzai, spokesman of the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, said that creating jobs was not the responsibility of the government only, but the private sector was also responsible in this regard.
He said that the government supported any company creating jobs for people. If any company commits violations or deceive people, the government should stop it, he added.
The first vice-president, AmrullahSaleh also in a recent post on his Facebook page said that they also heard about people’s complaints from QNET and the matter would be responded.
Pajhwok tried to talk with Esmatullah, who introduced himself as head of QNET, but he refused to have an interview.