FOR Suranjan and Tumpa Choudhury,a couple from Madhyamgram in North 24-Parganas district,darkness has descended for the second time in their lives. In 2007,Suranja lost his job after the factory,where he worked shut down abruptly. He was then 36. A friend of him advised him to invest in Saradha Group and become an agent of the company. He had no other option than to accept it to eke out a living. Along with his wife Tumpa,he started an agency of the doomed chit fund. He had invested Rs 8 lakh so far in the company.
But in six years time,the couple,who now have a five-year-old son,is back to square one and feel cheated.
Almost similar was the story of Arijit Das,a young man from Sonarpur in South 24-Parganas district who was lured into investing Rs 12 lakh in Saradha Group with promises of high returns.
The Choudhuries and Das were among 32 people who lodged their complaints with the Justice Shyamal Sen Commission that began its probe at its office at 5,Council House Street,for the first time after it was set up by the Trinamool Congress government last week to investigate the financial mess and suggest ways,among other things,on how to return the money to the duped investors .
The hearing for the complaints will take place from Tuesday.
Suranjan said they are now looking forward to the commission hoping that it can arrange for some money for them. We have become beggars,I dont know what I will do to feed my mother and my child, a sobbing Tumpa said.
Srikanta Barua,another investor from Baruipur in South 24-Parganas who had invested Rs 50,000 in the company,had also arrived at the commissions office to lodge his complaint. I am a daily farm labourer and I know what hardship I had to go through to save that money. I dont want the money back though I have submitted an application. I just want Sudipta Sen hanged in public. Does the commission have that power? Barua asked.
Meanwhile,Justice Sen after holding a meeting of the commission members,said: Similar centres for accepting complaints have been set up at New Town financial hub,Durgapur and Siliguri. More centres will come up at other places too, Justice Sen said at a media conference after a meeting of the commission.
Justice Sen also said investors will get back their money according to the proportion of investment they have made. We will make an inventory of the properties of the group and get them auctioned. A corpus fund will be made with that money to which the Rs 500-crore fund created by the chief minister will be added, Sen said.