ED accelerates pace of Ponzi scam probe in Bengal, new officer takes charge

With a clear aim to reaccelerate the pace of its investigation in the different chit fund scams in West Bengal, senior Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer, Vinod Sharma had been roped in as the joint director of the agency’s Kolkata (Zone-1) office.

Besides, Sharma will also be handling the affairs of the agency’s Guwahati (Zone-2) office. While ED’s Kolkata (Zone-1) office is responsible for probe against different chit fund entities based out of West Bengal namely Saradha Group and Rose Valley Group among others, the agency’s Guwahati (Zone-2) office is handling the investigations against the Ponzi entities in Assam.

So, his induction, sources said, is an indication that besides the ongoing probes of the agency in the multi-crore teachers’ recruitment scam in West Bengal, equal focus will be laid on the probe against the chit fund entities and its beneficiaries.

Meanwhile, another senior IRS officer, Sudesh Kumar Sheoran, will continue to be serving as the joint director attached with ED’s Kolkata (Zone-2) office, which is responsible for the investigation in the teacher’s recruitment irregularities, coal smuggling and cattle smuggling scam. Besides Kolkata (Zone-2), Sheoran will also be responsible for handling the affairs of the agency’s Bhubaneswar office in Odisha.

To recall, in October this year, only Sheoran’s term of deputation with ED was extended, considering that he had been acting as the supervising officer in the three major financial embezzlement scams in West Bengal, namely West Bengal School Service Commission (WBSSC) recruitment irregularities scam, cattle and coal smuggling.

ED sources said that the new year of 2023 is likely to witness renewed actions on part of the agency in West Bengal in multiple areas.

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