Chit fund scam Smokers taxed to compensate victims
The West Bengal government is setting up a Rs 500 crore fund to provide relief to depositors who have lost money by investing in chit funds run by the Saradha Group.
The announcement was made by state Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday, amid growing anger over the same and allegations that politicians too were involved in swindling small investors’ money.
The relief fund would get contribution from a new 10 percent tax to be imposed on cigarettes sold in the state.
“We are setting up a Rs 500 crore relief fund for small and medium depositors who have lost their money. This will help the common people who are now in distress,” Banerjee said.
“To raise the fund, we will impose 10 percent tax on cigarettes. This will get us around Rs 150 core. We will tap other sources to get the rest of the amount,” she said.
Banerjee said the money from the fund will be paid to the depositors on the basis of recommendations of the high-powered commission set up by her government.
The notification for the commission, headed by retired Calcutta High Court judge Shyamal Sen, was issued yesterday.