Chit fund scam: Buddhadeb lashes out at Mamata, demands CBI inquiry

Left-Trinamool war of word in West Bengal over chit fund scam saw Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee accusing CM Mamata Banerjee of dragging his name into scandal by spreading "lies" and demanding CBI inquiry.

Kolkata: The ongoing Left-Trinamool war of word in West Bengal over chitfund scam on Sunday saw Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee accusing Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of trying to drag his name into the scandal by spreading "lies" and stating that only a CBI inquiry would unravel the truth.
"What is she trying to prove by showing my pictures? That I, my family members and my party members have taken money from chit fund firms? She is trying to spread lies to save her own party from the scam," Bhattacharjee said addressing a rally in North 24-Parganas district.

A few days back, Banerjee had displayed copies of newspapers, including CPI-M mouthpiece Ganasakti, with the purported photographs of the former chief minister and a former CPI(M) MP from the state.

"I was the chief minister for 10 years. It is not a big issue if some one clicks any photograph with me. It doesn`t mean that we have taken money from that person. Have we put our own party leaders into chit fund firms to head any wing of such companies?" Bhattacharjee wondered.

"Rather than delivering big speeches, let there be a CBI inquiry. A CBI inquiry can only bring out the truth," Bhattacharjee said.

He alleged that the nearly two years of Trinamool Congress rule had witnessed a rapid decline in agriculture and industry.

On one hand poor farmers were not getting right prices for the paddy they produced ultimately pushing them to commit suicide, on the other the setting up of the steel factory at Salboni in West Midnapore district by the Jindals was in jeopardy, he said.

"During the last year of our (Left Front) rule i.E. 2011, an amount of Rs 9,500 crore was invested, but in the very next year the amount came down to a paltry Rs 123 crore," Bhattacharjee claimed.

He claimed that the tall promise of creating 10 lakh jobs came unstuck.

"Some jobs were indeed created, but that is in the green police, while other jobs were created by chit fund companies."

The only thing that progressed unhindered was `goondaism`, he alleged, adding that theft and dacoity had taken place during his regime, but not in the magnitude as was being seen at the present.

"Now common people are scared and the goondas are thinking that it is their government," he said.

He alleged that after sending the bill to control chit fund companies to Delhi in 2003 for presidential assent, at least 20 letters had been despatched, but the bill was not signed into law.

"It appears someone was behind this," he said without elaborating.