Left parties seek CBI probe into chit fund scam

New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) The Left parties Thursday sought a court-monitored CBI probe into the West Bengal chit fund scam and accused the Trinamool Congress-led government of not intervening to check activities of companies with suspicious financial dealings in the state.

Senior leaders of Communist Party of India-Marxist, the Communist Party of India, the Revolutionary Socialist Party and Forward Bloc met President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh separately and demanded tough measures to tackle fraudulent money pooling activities.

Some Left Front leaders from West Bengal had earlier in the day met Finance Minister P. Chidambararm also.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Basudeb Acharia said they had demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the chit fund scam.

“It is the biggest scam in West Bengal to the tune more than Rs.20,000 crore. Properties of Saradha group should be confiscated,” Acharia said.

He said the prime minister told them that he would look into the demand for a CBI probe.

Acharia said the Left party leaders told the prime minister that the central government can order a CBI probe as the chit fund controversy had inter-state dimensions and also fell within the purview of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

He said many families have been ruined due to the chit fund scam and many victims had committed suicide.

He said the state government’s move to enact a new law to protect small depositors would provide chit fund operators time to re-locate their properties.

Acharia said the Left parties did not have faith in the investigation ordered by the Trinamool Congress government into the scam.

He alleged that the Trinamool leadership was hand-in-glove with the Saradha Group and said that the truth will not come out till a CBI probe was conducted.

The Left party leaders also gave a memorandum which sought restoration of National Small Savings scheme as an attractive option for investors and sought appropriate commission to agents.

It said Left Front leaders have over the past two years submitted memoranda to the central government including the prime minister on the problem of irregularities being committed by some financial companies including “so-called chit funds.”

“Unfortunately, no timely intervention was made by the central government and the present state government,” the memorandum said.

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