KOLKATA/WEST MIDNAPORE: The CBI may very soon interrogate Debika Das Gupta, one of the directors of Saradha Realty Pvt Ltd. Das Gupta, who started as a trainee but became one of the directors of the company within four years, was allegedly responsible for managing Sudipta Sen's land in Odisha and West Midnapore.
The CBI and ED officials have so far traced 180 bighas (approximately 60 acres) of land in Odisha, of which there is one 40-bigha plot in Sambalpur and two other plots — one 40 bighas and another 100 bighas — in Balasore. But the officers of the central investigating agencies suspect that Saradha boss had bought more land.
"We have to interrogate someone who was closely involved in the land deals," said a CBI officer. So they are thinking of calling Das Gupta, who used to manage Saradha's real estate property mainly in Odisha and West Midnapore.
Das Gupta, 30, had a meteoric rise in Saradha. She joined Saradha Realty's Dhakuria office in mid-2008 as a programme analyst with a monthly salary of Rs 6,000, but within a year was made the director of the company. A resident of Christopher School Road in Kharagpur, Das Gupta bought an expensive apartment in a posh area in south Kolkata.
"After interrogating Sen, we suspect more lands were bought by Saradha," said another CBI officer. Interestingly enough, Das Gupta was hardly questioned by other investigating agencies probing the Saradha scam. ED didn't summon her, but she was once called by the state special investigating team (SIT) and quizzed for ten minutes.
According to investigators, the land bought by Sen is mainly agricultural which cannot be used to set up industry. "We have come to know that Saradha Realty collected a huge amount of money from the investors showing this land. We are not yet sure about the amount of money collected from the investors and are looking into it," the officer added.
Das Gupta refused to answer any of TOI's questions. "Why are you disturbing me and my mother? I don't want to say anything," she said. On being asked if she had been summoned by CBI, she said: "You are watching everything and know things better than me. I don't want to comment on this."
Apart from scanning several employees who are suspected to have valuable information, CBI sleuths are also trying to interrogate people who have been arrested in earlier chit fund scams. "The collection of money through a chit fund and its siphoning are done in different ways. We want to know the mechanism and it will help us understand the money transaction in Saradha scam better," explained a CBI officer.