We probed Odisha chit fund scam sincerely, claims Twin City police chief

Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Aug 20:

Stung by accusations that the commissionerate police showed unusual haste in closing the investigation into the affairs of the Artha Tatwa (AT) group, the biggest of the home grown players in the Odisha chit fund scam, commissioner Dr RP Sharma today claimed that the investigation was done in all sincerity and transparency.

rp sharmaBriefing media persons here today, Dr Sharma said each and every aspect of the AT group’s affair was investigated thoroughly and police was never under any pressure from politicians or other influential people.

“The police did not find any political link in this case. Police have inquired into the case in all sincerity and acted after obtaining sufficient evidence against the persons involved in the case,” he said.

The CP, however, refused to name the other seven persons against whom the commissionerate police have submitted two charge sheets in the additional district magistrate (ADM) court in Cuttack.

Quoting a CBI official, a section of the media has reported that CBI officials were amazed at the alacrity with which the commissionerate police wrapped up the investigation in the case and more so by the fact that it did not think it fit to raid AT’s offices in the state capital.

CBI raided the group’s head office on Sunday and seized 31 computer hard disks containing a wealth of information about the company’s links with politicians and other influential people, the reports quoted CBI officials as saying.

Acting on a complaint filed at Kharvela police station by an investor against the AT group last year, the police started investigation and arrested AT Group owner Pradip Sethi and six others Dr Sharma said, “We have not shown any haste in our investigation, which followed its due course. Since the charge sheet had to be filed within 60 days, we have investigated the case wisely and submitted the charge sheet against the accused in the ADM court in time to put them behind bars.”

“We have also submitted in writing the list of properties of AT group seized by the police thrice for its attachment to the State’s Finance department. The assets worth Rs 410 crore identified as belonging to to AT group includes 11 costly cars, 159 buildings, 242 acres of land and Rs 2 crore in bank balance. As many as 26 cases have been registered against the company in around 10 district police stations in the state such as Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Ganjam, Cuttack, Angul, Jajpur and Dhenkanal,” he said.

“This apart, we have handed over around 70 acres of land documents possessed by Sambit Khuntia, former AT group director, to the CBI recently,” he added.

“The commissionerate, in its inquiry, did not unearth any linkage of the company with politicians and influential people with the chit fund company. But once the CBI inquiry started, one by one political leader are coming into scanner. This is the biggest proof of the failure of the state police in the case,” said a CBI officer.

The CBI got the evidence on the role of the commissionerate police two days ago during its raid on the office of the AT Group in the state capital. The police have already filed a charge sheet, which meant its investigation into the AT Group affair was over.

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    Respected Commissioner Dr RP Sharma of Commissionerate Police,

    I want to ask Ten Questions to you, and after reading these questions ask your conscience whether you and your team have done justice to the poor and innocents chit fund victims or not.

    1. Why the Commissionerate Police Bhubaneswar-Cuttack did not take any action against any fraud Chit Fund Company during your tenure as per the Home Department of Orissa Letter No. 16891 dated 27.04.2004 (in this letter Home Department of Odisha had instructed CID CB, Odisha and Odisha police to do the supervision and control over the functioning of Non-Banking Finance Companies in Odisha)?

    2. Why the investigation for Artha Tatwa Chit fund Company was given to Commissionerate police?

    3. Why your team was not able to arrest Sambit Kumar Khuntia though he was staying in his luxurious house in Khurda?

    4. Why Mr. DEEPAK CHANDRATAN PAREEK, S/O Chandratan Murlidhar Tiwari of J-A/20, New MHB Colony, Gordi Road, Borivali (W), Mumbai-400091 who is one of the directors in Artha Tatwa Shares & Stocks Private Limited was not arrested and interrogated, by your team?

    5. Why JYIOTIPRAKASH JOYPRAKASH, S/O Mr. Jayaprakash Induprakash, Flat No. D2, 4th Floor, Bishnupriya Appartment, Jaidev Vihar, Bhubaneswar- 751012 (who is the director in all nine companies of Artha Tatwa Group and holding maximum number of shares in all companies next to Pradeep Sethy) was not arrested by your team?

    6. Why you and your team has not investigated the purchase of huge quantity of Gold by Artha Tatwa Shares & Stocks Private Limited from National Spot exchange (Electronic Spot Market Member ship No. 13690)?

    7. Why the immovable property (plot No. 11-3B/1332 of ‘B’ category measuring 4000 square foot, in Sector-11 in Bidanasi Project Area, Cuttack) of Advocate General Ashok Kumar Mohanty was not seized by your team as this property was in possession of Pradeep Sethy, Managing director of Artha Tatwa Chit Fund Company till 08.02.2013 and it is before the FIR was lodged against Pradeep Sethy in Balasore as well as Kharabela Nagar Police Station, Bhubaneswar (Case No. 44 dated 07.02.2013).

    8. Why any politician was not questioned by you and your team?

    9. Did your team carry out any raid in Sambit Khuntia’s residence in Khurda in the past?

    10. Were you aware that Artha Tatwa Group of companies had done any business out of Odisha State?


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