Kolkata, Jan 31 (PTI) Senior Trinamool Congress leader Sabyasachi Dutta Thursday criticised the questioning of a close aide of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Manik Majumdar, by the CBI in connection with the Saradha ponzi scam. Also Read - After Tandav Row, FIR Filed Against Amazon Prime's Mirzapur For 'Hurting Religious Sentiments'

Dutta who is a TMC MLA and also Mayor of Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation (BMC) alleged that the BJP government is pursuing political vendetta ahead of Lok Sabha elections to malign the TMC. Also Read - Highlights India vs Australia 4th Test Day 5 Gabba, Brisbane Today's Match Scorecard AS IT HAPPENED: Rishabh Pant, Shubman Gill Help IND Register Historic Series Win; Retain Border-Gavaskar Trophy

He said Majumdar is an elderly person and is neither a leader nor a elected representative of the party. Also Read - Varun Dhawan’s Wedding Outfit Will be Simple, Subtle and Nothing Over-the-Top, Says Stylist Akshay Tyagi

“He is a aged man. This kind of questioning of Manikda is nothing but political vendetta to malign us. He is neither a elected representative nor a leader. This is political vendetta to malign us ahead of elections,” Dutta said.

The CBI had given a notice to Majumdar, who has been Banerjee’s secretary since her early days in politics, to appear before it, the officials said in New Delhi.

But he had expressed his inability to come to the agency’s Salt Lake city office in Kolkata citing his age and health, they said.

Considering his application, the CBI team reached Majumdar’s residence near the famous Kalighat temple in Kolkata to question him and record his statement Thursday, they said.

The sources said the CBI suspected that Majumdar was a key player in managing funds of the party who had knowledge about the purchase of Banerjee’s paintings by Sudipta Sen, the promoter of Saradha group.

The Supreme Court had ordered a probe into the multi-crore-rupee Saradha scam and transferred the case to CBI in 2014.

Thousands of investors were left in the lurch by the scam and it led to the arrest of many leaders and ministers of the state’s ruling Trinamool Congress. All of them are now out on bail.

Saradha group founder Sudipta Sen and his associate Debjani Mukherjee, arrested in 2013 from Kashmir, are in custody.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.