PNB scam: CBI arrests main accused, 2 others
The CBI has arrested key accused Gokulnath Shetty then Dy Manager (now Retd) Punjab National Bank, Manoj Kharat, SWO(single window operator) and Hemant Bhat, Authorised Signatory of the Nirav Modi Group of Firms in connection with about Rs 11,400 crore scam. They will be produced before CBI special court Mumbai on Saturday.
According to CBI, Gokulnath Shetty and single-window operator Manoj had issued eight letters of undertaking (LOUs) worth over Rs 280 crore to Nirav Modi's company just three months before Shetty retired in May last year. The LOUs were issued in February. The due date mentioned was January 2018.
Meanwhile, raids continued by the Enforcement Directorate at Gitanjali stores in Durgapur and Patna. The ED is probing the trail of funds. The CBI is set to question more employees of PNB.
In its FIR, the CBI named Shetty and Kharat and accused them being in connivance with accused companies and directors. The FIR said that these persons defrauded PNB to the tune of Rs 4,886.72 crore.
Shetty and Kharat deliberately omitted to make entries of LoUs issued on behalf of Choksi's companies in the Core Banking System (CBS) of the bank to avoid detection, the FIR stated.
The arrest comes after Punjab National Bank suspended eight employees on Friday. The number of suspended employees now stands at 18, which also includes General Manager level officers. An internal investigation of the bank is still underway. PNB suspended 10 officers on Thursday and referred the matter to the CBI for investigation.
The CBI has received two complaints from the PNB against Nirav Modi and a jewellery company alleging fraudulent transactions.
The country's second-largest lender PNB has detected a USD 1.77 billion (about Rs 11,400 crore) scam where billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi allegedly acquired fraudulent letters of undertaking (LoUs) from a branch in Mumbai to secure overseas credit from other Indian lenders.