Bhubaneswar, Dec 4:
Leader of the opposition in the Odisha Assembly Bhupinder Singh on Wednesday sought a ruling from the Speaker on his demand for a reply by the Chief Minister on the chit fund issue.
Raising the issue during zero hour, Singh sought to know from the chair when was the government going to refund the money to depositors, who had lost their hard earned money to chit fund companies. He said six months had elapsed since the government had announced to repay depositors within three months from a corpus to be set up by the government. He further said the government was not clear on how many chit fund companies had cheated depositors in the state. It had earlier put the number of such companies at 134, but was now saying that there were only 84 such companies, he pointed out. Singh put the figure at 800.
He alleged that the state government was not serious about refund of money to the depositors and that the judicial commission probing the chitgate had not been provided with proper infrastructure and manpower to handle more than 10 lakh petitions that it has received.
Singh said the harassed depositors can not risk meeting with the chief minister with their grievances for fear of getting beaten up by cops who guard him 24/7.
“Instead they come to me for help”, he said adding, ” That is why the chief minister should give a detailed reply in the House”.
The Leader of the Opposition gave the example of the poor people in Darlipali village in Sundargarh district who had invested the compensation money they had received after selling their land to a power company in chit fund companies.
” They have been cheated and the amount is a whopping Rs 200 crore. Will they ever get their money back ,” he asked.