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HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

New anti-fraud body meet aims to end turf war

Sanjib Kr Baruah, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 23, 2013
First Published: 02:13 IST(23/5/2013) | Last Updated: 02:15 IST(23/5/2013)

The government’s fight against fraudulent collective investment schemes, like the Saradha scam, is set to get a boost with a top-level inter-ministerial body holding its first meet on Thursday.

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The panel will work on improving the coordination and ending the turf war between various government agencies.

 On May 1, 2013, HT had first reported on the setting up of the body which had been prompted by the reported inaction on the part of government agencies and departments to act against such fraud schemes.

 On many occasions agencies had failed to act despite alerts by the Intelligence Bureau, income tax department, Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and banks.

 The new panel is headed by the additional secretary (department of financial services) and will include joint secretary level officers from the corporate affairs ministry, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Securities and Exchange Board of India, Reserve Bank of India, Serious Fraud Investigation Office, etc.

 “This will be the first such exercise at this level that will brainstorm and take effective steps to ensure coordination among the various independent agencies that are dealing with the same problem,” a top government official said.

 Significantly, on Wednesday, finance minister P Chidamabaram hinted at the possibility of a new law being framed to oversee the financial sector and to address the obvious regulatory gaps.

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