Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, May 07, 2002
Money & Banking - Co-operatives
Maharashtra probing all co-operative banks
MUMBAI, May 6
EVEN as reports of the State initiating investigations into co-operative banks flow in, the Registrar of Co-operatives has started fresh audits into accounts of co-operative banks as a precautionary measure in the wake of the Home Trade controversy.
According to sources, at present, accounts of all co-operative banks are being examined as a precautionary measure in the light of the gilts scam involving the broking firm Home Trade and Nagpur District Central Co-operative Bank (NDCCB). "A detailed report based on these investigations will be ready by the end of this month and suitable action will be taken wherever necessary,'' said a source in the Pune-based Registrar of Co-operatives. According to earlier reports, the State has initiated a general probe into all 658 urban co-operative and 30 district co-operative banks across the State.
"Inspection of co-operative banks is currently under progress. Field officers are investigating banks, at the district as well as division level, on a case by case basis, wherever they find information of irregularities of transactions between these banks and Home Trade,'' said an official of the State Co-operative Department.
"Officers will examine records and take suitable action against boards of banks where they find irregularities. They will also submit their findings to the Commissioner of Co-operatives who will then consolidate the reports and present it to the State Government. It will take around a fortnight to complete the entire process and tabulate an investigation report,'' the official added.
"In the meantime, co-operative societies too would initiate action against co-operative banks that are found to have dubious transactions with Home Trade.''
Our Pune Bureau adds: The board of directors of the Nagpur District Central Co-operative Bank (NDCC) involved in the Rs 150-crore Government securities scam has been removed and the administrator has taken charge. This has come into effect from Sunday, said Mr B.G. Yashod, Deputy Registrar of Co-operatives.
Talking to Business Line, he noted that this has come about with the request from the Reserve Bank of India to the State Government. It may be recalled that the Commissioner of Co-operatives Mr Ratnakar Gaikwad, had served a notice on the bank on Friday. Asked about the developments on the Chinchwad-based Shree Satguru Jangli Maharaj Co-operative Bank, he said the officials are verifying the Government security transactions and a report is expected in 15 days "after which action would be taken against the officials involved.". The Satguru bank is facing investigations into the high volume purchase of Government securities and the bank officials have admitted that it has not received the gilts worth Rs 27 crore from Home Trade Ltd. The bank has gilts worth Rs 50 crore in liquid SGL account.
Mr Yashod said that officials have been placed in all the 658 urban co-operative banks and 30 district co-operatives banks to investigate the Government security transactions. They are expected to submit their reports in a month's time after which the necessary action would be taken, he added.
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