Union Minister Jual Oram today said West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Odisha counterpart Naveen Patanik are equally worried over chitfund scams in their states and meet often to share their worries.
Oram's remarks invited swift rebuttal from Patnaik, who described the Union minister's allegation as "false and baseless," saying he has no plans to meet Banerjee as yet.
"Naveen Patnaik and Mamata Banerjee are equally sad and both are worried over chitfund scams in their states. The two leaders are meeting frequently in order to share their worries," Oram told a local television channel.
Several leaders of the BJD in Odisha and Trinamool Congress in West Bengal are embroiled in the ponzi scheme scams.
While Artha Tatwa and Seashore companies are involved in the scandals in Odisha, there is the Sharada chitfund scam in West Bengal, said Union Tribal Affairs Minister Oram.
Noting that Patnaik and Banerjee had met recently in New Delhi, he said probably they are trying to form an alliance to take on the BJP.
"However, any tie-up against the BJP would not be successful as the BJD and the TMC leaders, their cinestars and party workers have cheated the people through chitfund firms. Those involved in committing the sin of duping poor investors will face the consequences.
"No alliance against the BJP will succeed as 100 lame people will not be able to confront a warrior."
Responding to questions about Oram's remarks, Patnaik said he has no plans as yet to meet Banerjee.