Kolkata: Trinamool Congress leader Sankudeb Ponda has been summoned by the Enforcement Directorate (ED)in connection with the money laundering probe in the multi-crore Saradha chitfunds scam case.
The agency has asked Ponda, who is TMC general secretary and former president of its youth wing, to depose before the investigators here on December 30. The ED has already questioned West Bengal minister Shyamapada Mukherjee and TMC MPs Mohammad Hasan Imran, Mithun Chakraborty and arrested MP Kunal Ghosh. “Yes, I have received the ED summons. I would cooperate with the agency in all earnest,” Ponda, who has earlier been the President of TMC’s youth wing in West Bengal, told media. He, however, said he would meet the ED sleuths on December 29.
“I would not like to talk anything about the case till I depose before the agency,” he said. Officials said Ponda’s version is required in this case as his name had figured as an employee in at least four firms that were conducting financial transactions with the now defunct Saradha group of companies. “In one instance, Ponda has received about Rs 14-15 lakh from the account of the prime accused in the case and Saradha Chairman Sudipta Sen. The agency wants to understand his business association with Saradha and others,” sources said.
They said the agency is expected to record Ponda’s statement under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and he has been asked to submit records of his financial transactions and income in the last over five years. Ponda’s name, the sources claimed, has also been traced by investigators as a financial “beneficiary” in some companies owned by TMC MP Srinjoy Bose who was last month arrested by the CBI in the same case. The Saradha scam case is being probed by multiple central agencies including the ED, CBI and the Serious Frauds Investigation Office (SFIO) under the Corporate Affairs Ministry.