BHUBANESWAR: The assembly's public accounts committee, headed by leader of opposition Bhupinder Singh, on Friday asked the registrar, cooperative societies, to submit a report within a week on the activities of 23 multi-state cooperative societies, which allegedly engaged in money circulation business and duped depositors in Odisha.
The committee, which visited the office of registrar, cooperative societies, also asked for publication of a White Paper carrying all details about 23 cooperative bodies within a month, registrar, cooperative societies, P K Patnaik said.
The direction followed the Centre delegating its power to the state government last month to investigate the functioning of at least 15 multi-state cooperative organisations allegedly running illegal money circulation business in Odisha.
The Union ministry of agriculture and cooperation had authorised the state registrar of cooperative societies to conduct "detailed inspection" on the "financial irregularities" including money deposited and outstanding by these organizations. The organizations included the Artha Tatwa Multi State Cooperative Limited, whose chairman-cum-managing director Pradeep Sethy and three other directors were arrested in May.
The assembly committee found that some of the multi-state cooperative societies had vanished after doing business in the state.
"At least eight of the 23 cooperative bodies have gone missing. The state government has no information about them though they have collected money from investors in the state," committee member Prasad Harichandan (Congress) said.
BJD's Sanjay Dasburma said, "The central registrar of cooperative societies had registered some of the multi-state cooperative bodies without the getting the no objection certificate from the state government."
The state government had earlier announced a judicial probe into the chit fund scam but the name of the high court judge who would conduct the inquiry is yet to be finalized, official sources said.
The 12-member public accounts committee had earlier this month deferred its scrutiny of multi-state cooperative societies, bringing to the fore differences the BJD and the Congress.