Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Jun 6:
Sarat Patra, a one-time close confidante of Odisha’s self-proclaimed godman Sarathi Baba alias Santosh Raul today appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) here.
Sources said Patra has been summoned for questioning on the financial transactions of Satyam Charitable Trust.
Patra is being questioned on the sources of the huge inflow of funds to the Trust and its utilization, sources added.
“I will reveal all I know about Sarathi. I will fully cooperate with the ED in its investigations,” said Patra speaking to reporters before appearing before the ED here.
It may be mentioned here that Patra was arrested by Crime Branch on August 28, 2015, on the basis of the statement of a woman victim of Sarathi. He was charged under Sec 420, 506 and 120(b) of the IPC.
Patra, a school teacher, was placed under suspension by the School and Mass Education department on August 13, 2015, on charges of neglecting his duty.
Patra was working as a Mathematics teacher at Mahanga Birbhadreswar High School.
Notably, the ED on June 3 had quizzed close aide of Sarathi—Pradeep Sahu and two staff of Barimula ashram—Saroj Rout and Bichitra.
Besides, the foster son of Sarathi—Satyam– was interrogated by the ED officials for over five hours at the agency’s office here on June 2. The ED officials had interrogated Satyam about the Trust’s financial transactions and land deals.
Similarly on May 31, the ED had quizzed Sarathi Baba’s close aides Dharanidhar Mallick, Surendra Mallick and Bijay Kumar Sahu on land related transactions of the self-proclaimed godman.
Again, the ED had on May 30, subjected godman’s brother Debendra Raul and aide Khagendra Rout alias Khaga to marathon grilling of five hours over financial transactions of Satyam Trust.
Moreover, a four-member team of the ED had on March 3 grilled the controversial godman inside the Choudwar Circle jail over financial transactions pertaining to Satyam Charitable Trust founded by him.