Odisha chit fund scam: EOW files preliminary charge sheet against Oscar Group

Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 16:

The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Odisha Crime Branch has filed a preliminary charge sheet in the multi-crore rupee chit fund scam involving Oscar Group, official sources revealed today.

Prabhas Chandra Rout
Prabhas Chandra Rout

According to sources, the EOW has filed charge sheet against Oscar Group Chairman Prabhas Chandra Rout, General Manager Muna Patra and five others for their alleged complicity in the chit fund scam.

“Preliminary charge sheet in the Oscar chit fund scam has been filed at the court of SDJM, Bhubaneswar. Oscar Group Chairman Prabhas Chandra Rout, General Manager Muna Patra and five others have been named in the charge sheet,” Crime Branch Special DG Bijay Kumar Sharma said.

Meanwhile, the EOW has written to Finance department for interim confiscation of Rs 40 crore assets of the Ponzi firm, he added.

It may be recalled that Prabhas Chandra Rout was arrested from New Delhi in June this year where he was residing in a temple on a fake identity.

Oscar Group had floated a chit fund company in 2010. The dubious firm was operating in Odisha, Gujarat and Maharashtra where it raised crores of money assuring the investors of hefty returns.

In March last year, scores of members of Kranti Odisha, a city-based civil society group, had staged a protest in front of the EOW office here demanding action against a public limited company ‘Oscar’ for defrauding people to the tune of Rs 230 crore.

Based on the complaint, Crime Branch had registered a case in this connection.

Notably, Muna Patra, General Manager of the company was arrested earlier and is presently in jail. Besides, three other directors – Kirti Bastia, Abani Patnaik and Tara Prasad Hota – were also arrested in June this year.

Preliminary investigation revealed that Rout – the realtor-turned-movie producer – had diverted the public money into film making. The Oscar chief had produced four movies— ‘To Akhire Mu’ (2010), ‘Most Wanted’ (2011), ‘Balunga Toka’ (2011) and ‘Rangeela Toka’ (2012) – in Ollywood.

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