The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Odisha Crime Branch on Saturday recorded the statement of three complainants in connection with the alleged loan fraud by a media house owned by MLA Soumya Ranjan Patnaik.
The statements of the complainants have been recorded under Section 164 of CrPC.
As per sources, as many as 24 persons have so far lodged complaints with the EOW in connection with the alleged loan fraud by Eastern Media owned by Patnaik, who has been expelled from the ruling Biju Janata Dal recently.
Earlier, the EOW had claimed that Odia newspaper Sambad, owned and edited by Soumya Ranjan Patnaik, had run a ‘meticulously organised loan scam’ in which at least Rs 50 crore loan was taken from various banks using forged salary sips of its employees.
As per reports, the EOW has also got evidence of threat and forged documents in the alleged loan fraud scam. Moreover, the wing also found multiple salary slips in the name of the complainants.
The EOW has also asked ESI and EPF to start an investigation into the loan fraud cases.
The EOW had raided the office of the media house on Monday. The development came within a week after the BD removed Patnaik from the post of vice-president following a factional feud in the party.
The EOW investigation into the Odia daily started after Ashim Mohapatra, a former employee of the daily lodged a complaint last week under Indian Penal Code 506, 467, 468, 471, 420, and 120 B.