Punjab National Bank fraud case updates: Enforcement Directorate continues raids, other bank officials are also under scanner

(The New Indian Express): 

Punjab National Bank, the second-biggest state-run lender, took the financial sector of the country by surprise when it announced earlier this week it had detected fraudulent transactions worth Rs 11,400 crore at a single branch in Mumbai. The key faces of one of the biggest financial fraud is diamond baron Nirav Modi and his business partner Mehul Choksi. 

Here are the developments so far:  

  • The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Sunday conducted searches at over 45 more locations in 15 cities across India in connection with the multi-crore scam, an official said.

  • At least 200 shell firms and “benami” assets have come under the scanner of the investigative agencies that are probing the above Rs 11,400-crore alleged fraud.

  • As investigations gather momentum, officials at overseas branches of other banks, where the fraudulently issued Letter of Undertakings (LoUs) were encashed, are under scanner, sources said.

  • Rating agency Crisil has put the Punjab National Bank's ratings on 'watch', following the fraud detected by the lender at one of its Mumbai branches.

  • A special court in Mumbai Saturday remanded three persons arrested in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam in a 14-day custody of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), saying the scam has “consequences for the economy of the nation”.

  • Indian banks could take a hit of more than USD 3 billion from loans and corporate guarantees provided to diamond companies at the centre of a massive alleged fraud at the state-run Punjab National Bank, the tax department has estimated.

  • State-owned UCO Bank Saturday said it has exposure of USD 411.82 million (about Rs 2,636 crore) in the Rs 11,400-crore PNB fraud committed by billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi and his associates.

  • Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Friday launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the PNB scam allegedly involving Nirav Modi, asking him to explain why it happened and what was he doing about it.

  • The CBI on Sunday arrested three people — a retired and a serving officials of Punjab National Bank and an executive of Nirav Modi's company — in connection with the alleged Rs 11,400-crore fraud, and carried out searches at the Brady Road branch of the bank in Mumbai.

  • The Enforcement Directorate on Saturday said that the solitary Gitanjali Gems store in Kolkata has started winding up since the Rs 11,400-crore Punjab National Bank scam broke out.

  • The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday has arrested Punjab National Bank's retired Deputy Manager, Gokulnath Shetty and two others in a multi-crore bank fraud case, officials said.

  • With Friday's action by Enforcement Directorate, the total seizure of diamonds, gold and jewellery has gone up to Rs 5,649 crore. The ED has summoned diamantaire Nirav Modi and his business partner and jewellery chain promoter Mehul Choksi in connection with its money laundering probe in the Rs 11,400-crore alleged fraud at Punjab National Bank

  • Regulators RBI and Sebi today stepped up probe into the massive Rs 11,400-crore fraud at PNB as law enforcement agencies intensified their hunt for billionaire diamantaire Nirav Modi and his associate Mehul Choksi. The Reserve Bank warned of “appropriate supervisory action”, saying it is assessing the control systems at Punjab National Bank (PNB).

  • In further trouble for beleaguered jewellery designer Nirav Modi, the Income Tax Department today provisionally attached 29 properties and 105 bank accounts of the diamond merchant, his family and firms as part of its tax evasion probe

  • The Congress on Friday continued its belligerent attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and claimed that the PNB fraud of over Rs 11,000 crore was India's biggest “bank loot scam” and has got bigger to touch Rs 21,306 crore. The BJP, hitting back, dubbed the PNB fraud a “UPA scam”, claiming that a state-run bank was pressured to sanction loan to tainted businessman Nirav Modi in 2013 a day after Rahul Gandhi visited his jewellery exhibition.

  • Davos photo featuring Nirav Modi- The government on Friday sought to distance itself from a controversial group photograph featuring absconding businessman Nirav Modi along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and some Indian CEOs at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last month.

  • A senior government official said that PNB has suspended eight more officials, including one at general manager level, for their suspected involvement in the multi-crore scam. The bank had suspended 10 employees dor their alleged involvement in the scam earlier on Wednesday.

  • PNB will settle liabilities towards other banks by March end and no further capital infusion would be needed as these would be funded from internal resources, an official confirmed.

          How could government let  Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi to leave India, asks Congress

  • Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi have been asked to respond within one week as to why their passports should not be impounded or revoked. If they fail to respond within the stipulated time, MEA will go ahead with the revocation.

  • On the advice of the Enforcement Directorate, the Passport issuing authority in the Ministry of External Affairs has suspended validity of passports of Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi with immediate effect for a period of four weeks.

  • Fresh CBI FIR involves 143 LoUs and 224 foreign letters of credit, which are separate from the earlier 150 LoUs relating to the FIR dated 31 January 2018.

    READ: CBI raids on Nirav Modi yield 95 documents

  • In this case the alleged loss to PNB is estimated at Rs.4886.72 crores. Three companies of Mehul Choksi have been named in the CBI FIR- Gitanjali Gems, Gili India and Nakshatra Brand Ltd.

  • CBI has reached former PNB Deputy Manager Gokulnath Shetty's residence in Malad who has has been untraceable since few days.

  • The searches are going on in Maharashtra's Mumbai and Pune, Gujarat's Surat, Rajasthan's Jaipur, Telangana's Hyderabad and Tamil Nadu's Coimbatore in connection with Mehul Choksi's Gitanjali Group and other directors of accused companies. 

    Explainer: How PNB fell victim to India's biggest bank fraud

  • CBI earlier in the day conducted searches at 20 premises in 6 cities across 5 states, belonging to Mehul Choksi's Gitanjali Group & other directors of accused companies.

  • Sources in finance ministry said, “Recapitalisation of PNB will not be impacted by fraud case, the bank will get its recapitalisation share of Rs 5000 crore, as allocated earlier.”

  • Eight employees of Punjab National Bank suspended, the number of suspended employees now stands at 18, which also includes General Manager level officers. Internal investigation of the bank is still underway. 

    READ: Meet Nirav Modi: The celebrity jewellery designer accused of money-laundering

  • Interpol's diffusion Notice issued against Nirav Modi, his wife Ami Modi, brother Nishal Modi and Mehul Choksi.

  • In Mumbai, after almost 24 hours, raids continued at Nirav Modi's boutique in Kala Ghoda. 

  • Nirav Modi is currently staying in a suite at JW Marriott's Essex House in New York, NDTV had reported earlier today. 

    WATCH: ED conducts raids on Nirav Modi showrooms

  • PNB Chairman and Managing Director Sunil Mehta today said that the bank has the capability to recover the dues from Modi and promised to take action against all wrongdoers.

  • The Enforcement Directorate on Thursday had conducted searches at his properties in Mumbai, Delhi and Gujarat, and seized assets worth Rs 5,100 crore.

 

(This story has not been edited by N24 staff and is The Indian Express auto-generated from a RSS feed.)

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