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Funds agent found dead

Suri, May 2: A CPM leader who used to work as an agent of two funds-mobilising companies in Birbhum was today found hanging from a tree 50 metres from his home.

Baidyanath Mitra’s family members said he had been depressed for the past few months after the companies closed down last year and would often “regret” his association with the firms. Pressure from investors to return their money had prompted the 49-year-old to borrow Rs 5 lakh from his in-laws in January.

He had paid back around 50 depositors.

The alleged suicide in Birbhum’s Sadaipur comes almost a week after a mason who had reportedly invested Rs 1.5 lakh in a Saradha company was found hanging from a tree in South 24-Parganas.

Mitra, the CPM secretary of the Karidhya local committee, had joined the two funds-mobilising companies three years ago and collected around Rs 20 lakh from investors. The two companies downed shutters a few months after the Saradha scandal broke in April last year.

Rendered jobless and under pressure from investors, the economics graduate started giving private tuitions.

“We lent him Rs 5 lakh, with which he repaid around 50 depositors. But he was depressed most of the time and kept to himself. He used to regret having worked as a cash-collection agent,” said Shyamal Saha, Mitra’s brother-in-law and a farmer.

Mitra’s wife Sikha said his depression could have been a reason behind the suspected suicide. She added that the family did not consult any doctor.

Debashis Ganguly, the Suri I zonal committee secretary of the CPM, said: “He made a mistake by joining the funds-mobilising companies. We had warned him.”

Co-owner dead

The co-owner of a funds-mobilising company in Nadia’s Chakdah was found hanging from the ceiling of his home today.

Jiarul Haque Mondal’s family said they did not think the suicide had any link with his funds-mobilising business. They said his company was operating and he had repaid a section of investors who had demanded their money back in the aftermath of the Saradha scandal.