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Didn’t get CDA house free; paid for it through cheques, claims ex Odisha AG

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Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Sep 13:

Former Odisha Advocate General Ashok Mohanty today denied allegations that he got a house at Markat Nagar in Cuttack free of cost from Pradip Sethy, CMD of Artha Tatwa (AT) group and a key player in the mega chit fund scam, and claimed that he had paid for it in cheque.

Ashok Mohanty
Ashok Mohanty

“I haven’t got it free.  The transaction was made through cheques. I have paid Sethy Rs 1, 01, 00000 (Rupees One crore and one lakh only) through cheque through my lone bank account in SBI. Everything is documented. I have handed over all papers to the CBI in this regard,” Mohanty told reporters after recording his statement with the CBI here this afternoon.

Mohanty said he came to know about Pradip Sethy intending to sell his land at CDA through a person and the deal was struck. He said while purchasing the property, he had no knowledge about the background of AT Group. He claimed to have followed all the requisite legal norms while purchasing the property from Sethy.

Asked whether CDA had raised any objections to the transfer of land since the land was originally allotted to Justice Laxmikanta Mohapatra, currently the Chief Justice of the Manipur High Court, by the Cuttack Development Authority (CDA) under the discretionary quota in 2007 and later sold to Pradip Sethy, Mohanty replied in the negative.

Meanwhile, the CBI is interrogating two senior officials of a local leading television channel, said sources in the agency. The sources further said another top official of the marketing department of the channel has also been summoned by the CBI and asked to report at the CBI office later in the day. The channel had received huge amounts of money from the AT Group towards advertisement, the sources added.