Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Mar 28:
The BJP has dubbed the unexpected offer by some non-banking financial companies (NBFCs), which are facing legal scrutiny for unauthorised collection of public deposits, to return investors’ money as a ‘poll gimmick’ by the BJD led Odisha government.
The claim by Kolkota-based company Prayag Infotech High-rise Limited that it had already returned over Rs 32.56 crore to at least 18,596 Odisha investors is completely false, the BJP said. “They have either renewed the bonds or transferred the deposits to other bonds like Sahara Group had done after the Supreme Court and SEBI directed it to return the investors’ money,” the party said in a press release here today.
With the general and Assembly elections barely two weeks away, the government is trying to hoodwink the gullible people in an effort to win the election. While chief minister Naveen Patnaik had assured the people to take steps to return the deposits during the civil elections last year, his government is yet to even disclose the actual amount swindled by the chit fund companies, the BJP said.
“Besides, the chief minister is trying to protect the ministers and ruling party members involved in the chit fund scam. The party has also rewarded such leaders by giving tickets to them in the elections,” the party said.
“While the chief fund scam took place under the very nose of the chief minister, he is trying to protect the party leaders by engaging a battery of lawyers in the court. All the attempts by the government to arrest the accused and announcement of a corpus fund and confiscation of property are eyewash. Why is the chief minister silent on providing money to the depositors?” asked BJP spokesperson Sajjan Sharma in the press release.
Now, the ruling party is preparing a blue print to avoid the issue in the coming elections smelling that it may affect its poll prospects of the party. That is the reason Naveen Patnaik is not uttering a word on returning money to the depositors and sending the culprits behind the bar because he knows that every word that says would a boomerang for him and his party in the election, the BJP said.
“Since ruling party politicians are involved in the multi-crore scam, the government is opposing to CBI probe in order to shield the party members and trying to suppress the matter through the vigilance inquiry. The party has already made up its mind to let the culprits go scot free. The Patra Commission has issued notice to Rourkela MLA and BJD candidate for the seat Sarada Nayak for his involvement in the chit fund scam. Similarly, some other leaders of the party involved in the scam are contesting on BJD ticket. The party’s evil plan to use black money amassed by these leaders in the elections will be exposed by the people and they will give their reply to BJD through votes,” said Sharma.
He also promised to return the money of people and take action against the accused including the involved leaders, if BJP comes to power in the elections.