Chit fund scam ghost returns to haunt BJD

Bhubaneswar: A day after his son was reportedly quizzed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), senior BJD leader and Cooperation Minister Surya Narayan Patro today feigned ignorance about the matter although the development sent ripples within the ruling-party which has already seen arrests of several of its leaders in chit fund scam.

“I have no information as I only came to know about it from various media reports,” said Patro.

Patro’s statements followed after reports that his son Biplab was allegedly quizzed last month in connection with his links with Artha Tatwa (AT) chit fund scam came to fore yesterday.

Sources said Biplab was quizzed after CBI got clues that some payments made towards purchase of computers for his company were made from the bank accounts of Artha Tatwa (AT) chit fund company.

As Biplab’s father, Surya Narayan Patro had been a minister in the ruling-BJD government several times in the past; speculations are rife that AT group showed undue favours to Biplab’s company. However, Biplap could not be contacted for comments.

“I had spoken to CBI officials, but they did not say anything about my son’s interrogation,” said Patro while dodging further questions by media today on the issue.

Whether Patro spoke to CBI officials to get some information or tried to influence the probe, his statements have now provided an opportunity to the opposition parties to train their guns on the State government.

“If the minister wanted to know anything he should have asked his son instead of contacting CBI,” said BJP leader Golak Mohapatra.

BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra on the other hand stated that, “As I have not heard and aware what Minsiter Surya Patra stated, commenting on it would be inappropriate.”

In another development, Justice MM Das Commission of Inquiry, in its 5th interim report submitted to Odisha government recommended refund of money to more than 1 lakh small depositors duped by 290 ponzi firms.

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