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Ponzi scam: CBI raids TMC MLA’s residence

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) was on Sunday conducting raids and search operations at the residence of Subodh Adhikari.

SNS & AGENCIES |

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) was on Sunday conducting raids and search operations at the residence of Subodh Adhikari, the Trinamul Congress MLA from Bijpur Assembly constituency in connection with a chit fund scam. Agency sleuths conducted search operations at six locations in the state including the residences of Mr Adhikari and his brother, Kamal Adhikari in connection with its probe, a CBI official said.

This comes after the arrest of Raju Sahani, Trinamul Congress leader and the chairman of Halisahar Municipality in North 24-Parganas district for being an alleged beneficiary in a chit fund scam. Another team of the CBI simultaneously conducted raid and search operations at the residence of Subodh Adhikari’s brother, Kamal Adhikari, who is the chairman of Kanchrapara Municipality also in North 24-Parganas district.

On Friday evening, the CBI sleuths arrested Raju Sahani in connection with his alleged involvement and being an alleged beneficiary of a chit funds entity, ‘Sanmarg Cooperative’. Cash worth Rs 80 lakhs was also seized from his residence at New Town in the northern outskirts of Kolkata.

The probe agency had also recovered a country-made firearm and documents of properties worth Rs 2.75 crore from the residence of Sahani. CBI sources said that from the documents seized from the residence of Sahani they came across some crucial clues related to the involvement of Subodh Adhikari and Kamal Adhikari with the affairs of Sanmarg Cooperative. “During the day, the CBI officers carried out raids at four places of Halisahar and Kanchrapara in North 24 Parganas district, including the ancestral house of the Adhikari brothers and their current residences.

The agency sleuths also raided house of the MLA’s personal assistant in connection with a ponzi scam,” the official said. The MLA’s two residences in Lake Town and Paikpara areas in Kolkata were also raided by the central agency, he said. Speaking to reporters, Kamal Adhikari admitted that Mr Sahani is his friend and said he did not know about any financial transaction of the arrested TMC leader.

“I don’t know about Sahani’s monetary dealings or the chit fund company. There is a political conspiracy against me and my party. The raids did not yield anything. I am ready to cooperate with the investigation,” he said. Asked whether Sahani has helped him buy his flat, the Kanchrapara Municipality chairman claimed that he bought the apartment with his own hard-earned money.

Veteran Trinamul Congress MP Sougata Roy alleged that the BJP is using the central agency to target his party leaders and intimidate them after the saffron camp failed to defeat the Trinamul Congress in the last assembly polls. “We have faith in the judiciary.

Those who are involved in the ponzi scam will be punished and the truth that the BJP is targeting TMC leaders as part of its political vendetta will come out,” he said. BJP state spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said Mr Roy is making such comments as the central agency has tightened the noose around ‘corrupt’ Trinamul Congress leaders.