Kolkata, April 28 IANS | 6 months ago

Senior Congress leader and Commerce Minister Anand Sharma Monday said West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was trying to protect people involved in the Saradha scam.

Hitting at Banerjee, who has accused the Congress of using the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the scam to derive political advantage, Sharma said Banerjee's logic that the probe was being instituted because of political difference was "ridiculous".

"If some people commit a crime, they will be punished and this is not political. Banerjee cannot give a fig leaf of political differences to protect those who have looted and cheated people. They must be punished irrespective of the parties they belong to. Banerjee's logic is actually ridiculous," Sharma told media persons here.

The multi-crore-rupee Saradha scam is back in the limelight after the ED arrested scam kingpin Sudipta Sen's wife and son. The opposition, including the BJP, has launched a scathing attack on the Trinamool, while the ruling party too has hit back targeting the Congress and Finance Minister P. Chidambaram.

Sharma justified the need for central agencies, the ED and Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to continue their probe.

"I do feel the ED and SEBI have a role to play and the truth must come out. There have been allegations by some of the Trinamool MPs...should be investigated," said Sharma.

Suspended Trinamool Rajya Sabha member Kunal Ghosh, who is behind the bars for his alleged complicity in the scam, has repeatedly claimed the involvement of several of his party colleagues.

The ED has twice interrogated Trinamool candidate for Balurghat seat Arpita Ghosh.

Ghosh, a former employee of the Saradha, has filed a complaint against company promoter Sudipta Sen for non-payment of salaries which eventually led to his arrest in 2013.

(Posted on 28-04-2014)

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