TMC hits back at Left for meeting PM, FM

The Trinamool Congress accused the Left of failing to protect investors in ponzi schemes during its prolonged rule in West Bengal.

Kolkata: Accusing the Left of failing to protect investors in ponzi schemes during its prolonged rule in West Bengal, the Trinamool Congress on Thursday hit back after Left leaders met the Prime Minister and Finance minister seeking a CBI probe into the chit fund scam.

"Who are asking for a CBI probe today? It is those who were unable to pass an effective bill to rein in chit fund companies to protect the interests of small investors when they were in power from 1980 to mid 2011," Trinamool Congress Secretary-General Partha Chatterjee told PTI.

Another TMC leader Derek O`Brien referred to the birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore that the state was celebrating.

"On Rabindra Jayanti, a day Bengal celebrates Gurudeb Rabindranath and abjures politicking. True to form CPI(M) doesn`t. It has resorted to dirty games," he said.

"Commies have complained to the President and demanded a CBI inquiry into the chit fund swindle they founded and promoted in then first place," he alleged.

"Aside from the hypocrisy, couldn`t CPI(M) have chosen another day? I suppose such cultural insensitivity comes easily to it," O`Brien said.

"After all the CPI(M) is the party that threw out `Sahaj Path` and lost Gurudeb`s Nobel medal. His message is secondary to its politics," the MP said.

Chatterjee, on his part, said that the party would state whatever it had to say at a rally tomorrow in Burdwan district to be addressed by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

Stating that a strong bill has been passed in the Assembly to protect investors in chit funds, Chatterjee, the industry minister, claimed that the chit fund scam would not have come to light had not the TMC government been in power.

Chatterjee also said that a top Left leader featured in a photograph published today by a Bengali daily with the owner of a chit fund company attending a wedding three months ago.

He also said that he had issued instructions to officials of all departments that they should verify invitations were not from chit fund companies before attending.

"I have taken this decision on my own and it has nothing to do with the government," he said.