The Asian Age
Saradha: Footballer under ED scanner
After a top football club official, the name of a famous foreign football player in Kolkata, who recently retired from the game, has come under the lens in the multi- crore Saradha chit fund scam. Jose Ramirez Barreto, the Brazilian striker, is the latest figure whom the Enforcement Directorate ( ED) is planning to send summons for questioning.
He is in Madrid now. According to sources, the ED found that lumpsum amounts of money were regularly deposited into his minor daughter’s bank account jointly held with a family member between 2011- end and mid- 2012 from Saradha Tours & Travels’ account with a bank in Panaji. During that period, the ace striker played for a reputed club in Kolkata.
The purpose behind the transactions has created suspicion among investigators, who are not ruling out the possibility that Saradha money was deposited in his daughter’s account to help him remain out of the scan- ner. When Mr Barreto returns to Kolkata, the ED will question him about the transactions.
On Monday, retired bureaucrat- turned- media baron Rathikant Basu was questioned by the ED into the sale of TARA television channels to Saradha Group owner Sudipta Sen.
The former directorgeneral of Doordarshan was the chairman and chief executive officer of Broadcast Worldwide Ltd, which owned TARA Newz, Tara Muzik, TARA Punjabi and TV Southasia.
The four channels were taken over by the Ponzi scheme company in 2011 but faced closure in mid-April of 2013. Summoned by the ED, Dr Basu, a retired IAS officer, went to the CGO Complex in Salt Lake and faced questioning.
Later he said, “The ED wanted to know about Saradha Group’s functioning and when I met Mr Sen. I never sold the channels to him because I did not own them. The deal was struck for around ` 18 crores with another person who had the majority share.”