Indian Express

Naveen’s role in Saradha Chit Fund scam should be probed by CBI: BJP

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State BJP president K V Singhdeo is confident of doing far better than in 2009, when the party won six assembly seats and was blanked in the Lok Sabha polls. PTI State BJP president K V Singhdeo is confident of doing far better than in 2009, when the party won six assembly seats and was blanked in the Lok Sabha polls. PTI

With the Supreme Court ordering a CBI probe into the Saradha scam, BJP on Saturday mounted a scathing attack on Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik accusing him of protecting the culprits and demanded inclusion of the BJD supremo in the enquiry net.

“Naveen Patnaik has to come under CBI probe net in chitfund probe. His role needs to be probed .. moreover, he has also been incharge of Home department,” said senior BJP leader Bijoy Mohapatra told reporters.

Claiming the Chief Minister and his associates stand exposed after the apex court order, he alleged Naveen was the captain of team and monitoring the entire process as Home minister when the crime branch as well as commissionerate of police (Bhubaneswar-Cuttack) probed chitfund scam. Now it is the end of the road for Patnaik, who has “blots on his cheeks” with the Supreme Court ordering a CBI probe into chitfund scam, Mohapatra said at the press meet, also attended by BJP state President K V Singhdeo.

He said when the demand for a CBI probe got shriller, Patnaik deliberately wrote a letter to Orissa High Court with a request to spare a sitting judge to probe it knowing fully well that a sitting judge cannot be engaged. Then he appointed a commission. When the matter went to the supreme court, the CM engaged a battery of highly paid lawyers to save leaders involved in the scam, though it was a case between chitfund companies and investors, Mohapatra said.

Asking the Chief Minister to clarify why he was opposing CBI probe while states like Assam and Tripura recommended probe by the central investigating agency into the scams in their states. The BJP leader also lashed out at BJD government for agreeing to allow CBI probe in 37 ponzi companies and leaving out seven chitfund firms facing serious charges.

The senior BJP leader also asked the politicians and bureaucrats involved in the scam to surrender voluntarily before CBI starts investigation and reaches their necks. The chief minister should ask the culprits to surrender before they are caught, he said.

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