West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee launched a 'Save the Constitution' protest in Kolkata on Sunday evening after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) landed in the city to question Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar in the Saradha and Rose Valley chit fund cases. Kumar was heading the Special Investigation Team (SIT) Mamta Banerjee's government had set up to investigate the Rose Valley scam back in 2013.
Here's all you need to know about the Rose Valley chit fund scam:
- Rose Valley scam is one of the biggest financial frauds which rocked state of West Bengal in 2013. The scam was even bigger than the Saradha scam and as per Enforcement Directorate estimates Rs 17,520 crore was reportedly raised from investors across India. The all India small depositors association pegged the amount at Rs 40,000 crore. Few reports pegged the amount at over Rs 60,000 crore.
- The Rose Valley group had allegedly floated a total of 27 companies for running the alleged chit fund operations of which only half a dozen were active. It is alleged that the company had made "cross investments" in its various sister firms to suppress its liabilities towards investors.
- The states affected by the scam were West Bengal, Assam and Bihar.
- According to ED, a portion of the money was also used to bribe politicians so that the scam could run smoothly. The ED had frozen 2,500 accounts of the Rose Valley group and the agency suspects that there are many more to be tracked and frozen.
- In 2015, Rose Valley chairman Gautam Kundu was arrested in money laundering case and probed by the CBI and Enforcement Directorate. In the course of the investigation, the government froze all the 2,600 bank accounts of the Rose Valley Group, which held around Rs 800 to 1,000 crore.
- The name of TMC MP, Tapas Paul too had surfaced during investigations as he was the director in the company.
- On January 25, 2019, CBI arrested Bengali film producer Srikant mohta for duping rose Valley group by Rs 25 crore. Mohta's company Shree Venkatesh Films has produced many award-winning films like Chokher Bali, Memories In March, Autograph, Raincoat and Iti Mrinalini. The firm also distributes most Bollywood and Hollywood movies in eastern India.