Top Indian private banks under scanner in bank fraud probe

Angelica Greene
March 8, 2018

The celebrity jeweller - the mastermind of the massive fraud - is said to have fled the country and was reportedly last seen in NY after his appearance at the World Economic Forum in Davos as a member of the Indian delegation.

Modi and Choksi travelled overseas in January and have not returned since.

ICICI Bank said the bank has "no exposure to the Nirav Modi group of companies, nor has the bank issued any Letter of Undertaking; nor has any buyer's credit exposure against LoUs with respect to Nirav Modi group of companies as well as the Gitanjali group of companies".

SFIO is also expected to call officials of almost 31 banks which have an exposure to the companies of diamond traders Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi.

On March 3, an anti-money laundering court in Mumbai issued non-bailable warrants against the absconding diamantaires Modi and Choksi.

To date, the ED has searched over 198 locations across India and seized properties worth almost Rs. 6,000 crore, while the CBI has arrested at least 19 people so far.

Diamantaire Nirav Modi's flagship company Firestar Diamond moved Delhi High Court against the seizure of his properties.

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"Matter of Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi is connected to Congress, the problem started during their time, they can not mislead the nation on this issue", Goyal told media here.

The court will hear the plea March 7. But rapid action could have averted the public relations disaster that left Prime Minister Narendra Modi red-faced after featuring in a Davos group photo that included Nirav. PNB has lost more than 40% of its market capitalisation since disclosing the fraud last month.

Citing the RTI reply, Surjewala said in 2015, the fraud totaled Rs. 5,560.66 crore; in 2016, Rs. 4,273.87 crore and in 2017, the fraud totaled Rs. 9,838.66 crore.

The money of people is not safe in banks, he said.

Celebrated jeweler Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi are accused in the multi-crore scam that has rattled the country and economy.

Nirav Modi will be prosecuted for wrong declaration of value and quantity of the imported Cut and Polished Diamonds, Pearls to Customs and diversion of the Duty Exempted goods to the domestic tariff area clandestinely, the report had said.

Other reports by GizPress

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