Saradha scam: CBI sus­pects bro­kers duped in­vestors too

Hindustan Times (Lucknow) - - NATION - Ab­hishek Sha­ran ab­hishek.sha­ran@hin­dus­tan­

NEW DELHI: The CBI, which has been prob­ing the multi-crore Saradha chit-fund scam, sus­pects that there could be sev­eral in­vestors whose de­posits were gob­bledup by bro­kers and never reached the chit-fund op­er­a­tors they were work­ing for.

In what could be a case of scam within a scam, the CBI is ex­am­in­ing claims made by a few of­fi­cials of an ac­cused firm that sev­eral bro­kers, who were al­legedly not con­trolled by them, had pock­eted the de­posits they col­lected from de­pos­i­tors in­stead of sub­mit­ting to the em­ploy­ers, said an agency source.

“A few top func­tionar­ies of an ac­cused firm claimed dur­ing their ex­am­i­na­tion that there were groups of bro­kers who kept no cor­rect ac­count of cash de­posits or the de­pos­i­tors and gave them fake re­ceipts to fool them,” said the source.

The source said that such de­pos­i­tors stand a slim chance of get­ting re­funds since the ac­cused firms can dis­own them eas­ily. “The firm’s of­fi­cials told us that their company should not be held li­able for re­funds in cases where the de­posits never reached them,” said the source.

The group of firms un­der the CBI scan­ner had al­legedly op­er­ated via its army of 2.21 lakh agents who were paid 30% com­mis­sion, a rate that was con­sid­ered to be on the higher side, to rope in max­i­mum gullible in­vestors, said the source. But in a majority of cases, the de­pos­i­tors were not asked to sub­mit their res­i­dence proof, Per­ma­nent Ac­count Num­ber, or other iden­tity par­tic­u­lars and the de­posits’ de­tails were not ac­cu­rately shown in the book of ac­counts ei­ther, said the source.


Sus­pended TMC MP Ku­nal Ghosh, one of the ac­cused in the case, be­ing pro­duced in a Kolkata court in Septem­ber.

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