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Saradha Chit Fund: ED questions ex-TMC MP Kunal Ghosh

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday questioned former Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh in its probe into the Saradha Chit Fund scam.

A senior ED official told IANS: “Ghosh is being questioned for his role in the Saradha Chit Fund case under sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.”

The official said that the agency is questioning Ghosh about the financial transactions of the Saradha group.

On being asked when the agency has summoned Trinamool Congress sitting MP Satabdi Roy, East Bengal football club official Debabrata Sarkar, businessmen Sajjan Agarwal, Sandhir Agarwal and Saradha Group Chairman Sudipta Sen’s close aide Arindam Das, he said, “They have been asked to appear in August before ED.”

The Saradha scam came to light in April 2013 and is estimated at over Rs 10,000 crore. The ED has filed a case on the basis of the CBI’s FIR.

(IANS)

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India

Many chit fund conspirators still outside CBI probe; Ex-MP

Former Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh, who was interrogated with Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in Saradha and Rose Valley chit fund scams on Tuesday, claimed that many conspirators are still outside the purview of the probe.

“I have tried to help the investigation since the beginning. This time also, I have tried my best to answer their questions. Many conspirators are still outside the purview of the probe and arrest,” said Ghosh, who was arrested in November 2013 in connection with the two chit fund scams and later granted interim bail by the Calcutta High Court in 2016.

Ghosh, who had earlier implicated former Trinamool Congress leader Mukul Roy and 12 others in the Saradha ponzi scam, said Kumar’s interrogation was long overdue.

“The complaints that were there for a long time were raised during the interrogation sessions and the good thing is Kumar had to listen to my complaints, which he earlier refused to,” he said.

“This (interrogation) should have happened long ago. It has been delayed a lot,” he said.

CBI interrogated Ghosh and Kumar together for several hours on Sunday and Monday, and recorded their statements.

“They raised certain issues that they came across during the investigation and asked both of us to individually respond to that. They have recorded my statements and asked counter questions to Kumar on the basis of it,” Ghosh said.

The agency summoned Kumar for the fourth consecutive day on Tuesday for questioning.

Many chit fund conspirators still outside CBI probe: Ex-MP

IANS

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India

CBI to move SC after face-off with Kolkata policemen in investigation of chit fund scams

Following the face-off between CBI and Kolkata policemen outside city Police Commissioner’s official residence, the central agency said it would move the Supreme Court, alleging the investigation in ponzi scam cases were being hindered and investigation officers were harassed.

“We are in touch with legal advisors on this. It’s a Supreme Court ordered probe and every authority is supposed to follow the directions of the honourable court. We can move the Supreme Court on Monday,” said a senior agency official, requesting anonymity.

There was a high drama in front of Kolkata police commissioner Rajeev Kumar’s official residence on Loudon Street on Sunday as a group CBI officers approached the house, but they
were stopped by city police personnel, who also forcibly took the federal probe agency officers to a police station.

A senior Kolkata Police officer told reporters, “They told us that they were CBI officers and when asked to produce documents, they failed to submit these. They could not give us any satisfactory response,” he said.

Refuting the claim, a CBI official said the agency had all the requisite documents.

“No one is in detention. We were not given any cooperation and have all the documents. Our officers came for the operations and we were taken to a police station forcibly. We sought police protection which was denied. They did not accept any request. We are intending to submit an application but they were not ready to accept it,” said a CBI officer.

“They went there after completing all the legal requirements and they (city police) should have cooperated. Over last two years, we have been giving notices to police officers who were investigating in these (ponzi scheme) cases before the Supreme Court handed over the cases to us,” CBI Joint Director Pankaj Srivastava said.

He alleged that several primary evidences were missing, and either they were “destructed” or “contrived”.

“Several very primary evidences were missing and either they were destructed or contrived. So we wanted to question these people about where evidence has gone…for the last two years, the investigation in these were being interfered into and our officers were called to police stations for different cases and they were questioned and harassed. A lot of intimidation has been going on.”

He said the federal agency had moved Supreme Court in 2017 and in July 2018, the court said that the agency should cooperate with the CBI.

“Despite that, no cooperation came forward. So our officers went there (CP’s residence) to question him and they were stopped from entering the residences.

“On the order of the Supreme Court to investigate larger conspiracy involving in these cases, the agency has been investigating the case.

“We will move the Supreme Court,” he said.

Srivastava also said the agency offices in the city and his residence here was surrounded by state police forces and following which, Central Police Force was called on for the safety of documents.

IANS