Mumbai: The Nafed scam hasn’t just created a storm in Patna. The misdeeds of the organisation have now started surfacing in Mumbai too.
Documents in possession of CNN-IBN’s Special Investigation Team, which led to expose of the Rs 3600-crore Nafed scam, also include papers is the name of a certain Guruswaroop Srivastav.
According to Nafed, Srivastav had taken Rs 235 crores to fund his iron ore export business but diverted Rs 100 crores to fund a deal with Painter MF Husain to buy 100 paintings.On his part, Srivastav says the charge is baseless. My deal with Nafed has nothing to do with my dealings with MF hussain. I have not even given Rs 100 crores to Mr Husain," claims Guruswarup Srivastav, an industrialist.
But apart from this, Srivastav also says that he has already repaid a sizeable sum of the loan that he had taken from Nafed."The money was taken in installments. And after the first few installments, I started paying back. I have returned over Rs 100 crore and the remaining amount I will pay back by March 1," he says. And though this loan may get repaid soon, sources say most of Nafed’s cleints have defaulted on their payments. "We are the only people who have given back the money. Others have just vanished and have not paid back," alleges Mahesh Parikh, a business advisor. It’s a scam most banks still haven’t smelt. The Union Bank of India, which lent Rs 300 crores to Nafed says it is not aware of any irregularities.
The Allahabad Bank, with close to Rs 93 crores with Nafed, says according to their records the money was used for oilseed procurement. But the banking regulator, the RBI, has already reacted to these developments and says it is looking into the matter.
Meanwhile, a visit to the Mumbai office of the cooperative raises many a question over the functioning of the cooperative.Says a peon at the office, "Mr Bansal hasn’t come in today. What can one say about our officers, one doesn’t know when they come and go." Even a cursory glance inside the office gives an impression as if attendance is optional here.
The Mumbai office of Nafed was set up to market agricultural products out of this region. But it would seem not just this office, but the entire national cooperative is being run like a private fiefdom.
There are also allegations and even a criminal complaint against its chairperson Ajit Singh, the documents for which are under the possession of CNN-IBN.Among the charges against Ajit Singh, one is a serious charge of criminal intimidation which was filed by Guruswaroop Srivastav.It alleges that the MP had threatened to shoot him with his revolver and attempted to extort Rs 50 crores from him at gunpoint. Testifies Majeed Memon, Gurusawrup’s lawyer, "My client was confined and a case of criminal intimidation was filed. And I forwarded the complaint to the police."