The CBI custody of the main accused in the Saradha chitfund scam, Sudipta Sen, suspended Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh and another person was today extended by a city court by three days.
Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Haradhan Mukhopadhyay extended the custody of the three accused on a plea by the CBI that further interrogation was required in connection with documents related to funds collected by the Saradha Group.
Apart from Sen and Ghosh, the custody of Debjani Mukherjee, a close associate of Sen, was also extended by the court.
The court sent three others, Manoj Nagel, Arvind Chouhan and Somnath Dutta, who were senior officials of the Saradha Group of companies, to judicial custody till July 7.
The central agency had prayed for seven days custody of the accused, but the court granted only three days. All the six accused were sent to CBI custody by the court on June 16 for a week.
The Supreme Court had on May 9 ordered a CBI probe into the chit fund scam in West Bengal, Odisha and Assam in which various companies, including Saradha, allegedly duped investors of around Rs10,000 crore, while taking note of allegations of scamsters being 'patronised' by people in 'high positions'.
Holding the scam as a "sordid affair", the bench had said that investigation by the state police had not unfortunately made any significant headway in recovering the money. Referring to a SEBI report, the apex court had said that the Saradha group had floated 160 companies and four of them were frontrunners in the sordid affair.
It was also noted that 2,21,000 agents were working for Saradha Realty India Ltd and a report estimated the collection made by the Saradha Group of companies at Rs 2,459 crore. Sen and Mukherjee were arrested from a hotel in Kashmir's tourist town Sonmarg on April 23, 2013 and were taken in custody by Bidhannagar Police of West Bengal.
The others were arrested later by the state police.