Tuesday March 19, 2019
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Bank of Baroda officials under CBI custody in Forex case

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New Delhi: Two Bank of Baroda officials arrested on Tuesday send to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for investigation of illegal forex transfer case.

Bank of Baroda employs, assistant general manager Suresh Kumar Garg and foreign exchange unit head Jainis Dubey were arrested in connection to the illegal transfer of Rs.6,172 crore abroad through the bank. The CBI informed the court that both officials have been suspended by the bank.

Special CBI court presiding officer P.K. Jain remanded the duo in CBI custody till October 16 after the central agency said their custody was required to unearth the whole conspiracy. The plea was, however, opposed by defence counsel.

The court asked the probe agency about the criminality involved in the case. “You (probe agency) have to find the offence committed by the accused. You have to collect quality evidence in the case,” the court told the CBI after it failed to respond about the offence committed by the accused.

Citing apex court directions, the court said no accused should be arrested in a hurry.

The CBI told the court that the accused allowed money transfer without informing their regional office. A complaint related to the illegal fund transfer was filed by the bank itself, the court was told.

The central investigating agency said both accused allowed transfer of heavy amounts of money through 59 bank accounts to companies in Hong Kong and Dubai for fake import and export businesses.

The probe agency said that the holders of 59 bank accounts were untraceable and the questioning of the duo would help in identifying those involved in the conspiracy.

The CBI said though the accused were called 3-4 times prior to their arrest, they did not cooperate and thus their custodial interrogation was required to unearth the entire conspiracy.

Defence counsel Bijender Singh, appearing for Garg, told the court that his client had written to the regional office in January, 2015 about the irregularities he noticed in several accounts.

Singh claimed there was no loss to the bank due to this huge foreign fund transfer, adding that Garg was arrested in a hurry to protect someone else.

The court then directed the CBI to conduct investigation first instead of arresting people in the case.

Countering the prosecution’s submissions, the defence counsel said both the accused were under detention since October 9, thus giving the CBI sufficient time to interrogate them. No further custodial interrogation of the duo was required, the defence said.

The case pertains to the transfer of Rs.6,172 crore in foreign exchange through a Bank of Baroda branch to Hong Kong. The money was transferred through 59 bank accounts to companies in Hong Kong and Dubai for fake import and export businesses.

“A search revealed that addresses given by at least 50 companies for bank records were fake,” said a CBI official.
“Interrogation of bank officials revealed that some employees acted as middlemen for these companies,” he added.

(IANS)

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PM Modi Slammed for “Destroying” CBI: Congress on Alok Verma’s Case

The Congress on Tuesday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the Supreme Court reinstated Alok Verma as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director, saying he has been exposed for "destroying" the premier investigating agency.

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narendra modi
Image: IANS

The Congress on Tuesday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the Supreme Court reinstated Alok Verma as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director, saying he has been exposed for “destroying” the premier investigating agency.

“Modi adds another first to his list. After being the first Prime Minister to be exposed destroying the CBI before the Supreme Court, after having ruined the CVC’s (Central Vigilance Commission) credibility (requiring supervision by former SC judge), Modi has now become first Prime Minister to have his illegal orders set aside by the Supreme Court,” Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said in a series of tweets.

His remarks came soon after the Supreme Court judgment pronounced on a plea by Verma and NGO Common Cause challenging the government’s decision on the intervening night of October 23-24 to divest Verma of his charge as head of the investigating agency.

Reminding Modi that the government comes and goes but the integrity of the institutions survive, Surjewala hoped that the judgement would be a “lesson” to the Prime Minister about the strength of country’s democracy and the Constitution.

“Modiji please remember, governments have come and gone. Integrity of our institutions have survived. Let this be a lesson to you about the strength of our democracy and the Constitution. Let this be a lesson that howsoever despotic you may be, law catches up in the end,” he said.

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Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). Wikimedia

Firing salvo at Prime Minister, the Congress leader said: “After making CBI Chief suffer the consequences of your illegal decision for three months, will you show the courage to return three months of lost tenure? Unless you are afraid of investigation into Rafale scam.

“Modi equals to ‘Muzzling of Democratic Institutions’. First, you lose four economic advisors in a row including two RBI Governors. Second, four Supreme Court judges go public on Judge (B.H.) Loya, then you destroy credibility and competence of the CBI and CVC. This is your model of ‘minimum governance, maximum government’,” he added.

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Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi questioned the Supreme Court verdict asking what has changed now.

“Before the Supreme Court verdict; Alok Verma didn’t have powers of CBI Chief, couldn’t take any decision on policy or investigation. After Supreme Court verdict: Ditto,” Singhvi tweeted. (IANS)