Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Mar 4:
The CBI today raided the offices of the Rose Valley Group at 43 locations across the country, including Odisha, in connection with the multi-state, multi-thousand crore chit fund scam.
CBI sleuths barged into the first floor of the Jagannath Complex in Kharavel Nagar here where the Kolkata headquartered company owned four flats on the first floor and seized several documents, computers and other papers.
A resident of the apartment told OST that Rose Valley staff, who used to work out of the first floor office, started vacating the premises after the noose tightened on chit fund companies in the wake of the Supreme Court order for a CBI probe in May last year.
“Their staff, however, have been coming off and on and taking away computers, hard disks and documents. I doubt if the CBI team has got anything worthwhile in today’s raid,” he said.
While the resident of the complex may well be true, there was at least one ‘worthwhile’ seizure today: the photograph of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik with a senior Rose Valley executive, which had pride of place in the office.
As in the case of another photograph showing Patnaik on stage with Seashore Group CMD Prashant Dash earlier, the BJD sprung to the Chief Minister’s defence with admirable alacrity.
“Our leader and his government has never done anything that even remotely promotes or condones wrong doing. But a political leader meets so many people every day. It is simply not possible to verify the antecedents of each and every one,” senior BJD leader Rabi Narayan Nanda said.
The Rose Valley premises here was among the 43 locations across the country raided by the central investigating agency today. Among the places raided were 27 in West Bengal, seven in Tripura and one each in Assam, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu, a CBI release said.
Searches were also conducted in the residential premises of Rose Valley Group chairman Gautam Kundu, MD Shibamoy Dutta and formers directors of the company including Abir Kundu, Ramlal Goswami, Ashok Kumar Saha and Trinamool Lok Sabha MP Tapas Paul, the release added.