Hundreds of duped depositors from 30 districts staged a massive demonstration demanding refund of their hard-earned money in front of State Assembly here on Tuesday.

People under the banner of Aarthika Sansthamananka Dwara Khatigrastha Milita Mancha (ASDKMM) took out a rally from Master Canteen to Lower PMG Square.

They alleged that government machineries had connived with fraudulent companies while gullible depositors were made to suffer.

“In the past one decade, fraudulent companies with the help of both State and Union government had cheated over 50 lakh depositors. Depositors are now running from pillar to the post seeking refund of their investment,” said Jayant Das, convenor of ASDKMM.

Mr. Das said, “now bureaucrats and top police officers who are in charge of investigation have joined hands with fraudulent companies. These officials are weakening the case against these companies.”

“In 2009, when Find India decamped with Rs. 500 crore deposits, the government should have learnt the lesson and it should have strictly implemented laws forbidding a free-run to companies,” he said.

Top Stage government functionaries including Governor and Chief Minister attended functions of these fraudulent companies giving credence to their activities, Mr. Das said, adding depositors were encouraged to investment heavily.

The ASDKMM convenor said after Saradha scam surfaced in West Bengal and involvement of top political leaders in Odisha was alleged, the State government here started sealing offices of companies involved in money circulation scheme. It did not serve any purpose, rather companies got time to conceal the properties, he said. Editor of Odia daily Sambad Soumya Ranjan Patnaik and veteran journalist Rabi Das addressed the gathering.

ASDKMM demanded that the State government should identify depositors and start process of refunding their investments.