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Odisha chit fund scam: CBI lays hands on ‘crucial’ details of AT bank accounts


Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Sep 18:

The CBI team probing the Odisha chit fund scam today laid its hands on certain ‘crucial’ documents including details of some bank accounts of the Artha Tatwa Group (AT) from the manager of the Balugaon branch of a premier nationalised bank.

The branch manager was summoned by the Central agency today for interrogation over the transactions of the AT group with the balugaon branch of the bank.
The bank official, who was questioned for more than two hours, refused to comment on the nature of details of the interrogation.

Sources in the CBI said, AT Group had opened multiple bank accounts in the Balugaon branch of the bank and the documents submitted by the branch manager today offer significant clues.

” Based on the crucial bank documents procured today from the branch manager of the bank, the CBI team would try to follow the money trail, in and out these accounts, to trace the major players in the AT Group fraud,” the sources added.

“ Many big names have cropped up during the investigation, but half of the big players have not been exposed as yet,” said the sources, adding, many top politicians and other powerful people will be summoned in due course.

Reliable sources said the CBI has already prepared a list of 44 influential persons including senior leaders of the ruling BJD, who are to be questioned by the investigating agency.

The names of some MLAs, ministers, sons of ministers and former ministers are also said to have figured in the list. The list has been prepared on the basis of information provided to the CBI by AT Group Chief Pradip Sethy and the group’s accountant Srikrushna Padhi during interrogations, sources said.

So far the CBI has interrogated BJD’s Banki MLA Pravat Tripathy and Pranaba Balabantaray, BJD MLA from Dharmasala and son of BJD strongman Kalpataru Das besides a number of BJD office bearers over their links with the Artha Tatwa Group and its chief Pradip Sethy.