Bhubaneswar Odisha government today admitted that Artha Tatwa Group CMD Pradip Sethy was conferred with prestigious “Best Youth Cooperator” award in 2010 barely 17 days after registration of his AT Multi-purpose Cooperative Society with the Registrar of Co-operative Societies.
“AT multi-purpose cooperative society was registered with the Registrar of Co-operative Societies, Bhubaneswar on November 3, 2010,” Cooperation Minister Damodar Rout said in a reply to a written question by BJP member Dilip Ray in the Assembly today.
Just 17 days later, Sethy received the award on November 20 at a function attended by the then Governor M C Bhandare and then Cooperative Bank president Jagneswar among others.
Admitting that he was also present in the function as the then minister of cooperation, Rout said BJD MLA Pravat Kumar Tripathy was the president of the State Cooperative Union.
Meanwhile, BJD MLA from Banki Tripathy has been arrested by the CBI on charges of criminal conspiracy and for allegedly taking money form the AT Group CMD Sethy.
It is alleged that the award helped Sethy to collect money from investors in rural and urban Orissa. Sethy has also been arrested and put in jail for more than a year.
According to CBI sources, Tripathy as the president of the State Cooperative Union had pressurised the officials to expedite registration of Sethy’s Artha Tatwa (AT) Multipurpose Cooperative Society.