HindustanTimes Wed,01 Oct 2014

More teeth for central vigilance officers after Syndicate Bank scam

Mahua Venkatesh, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 10, 2014
First Published: 23:14 IST(10/8/2014) | Last Updated: 23:16 IST(10/8/2014)

The central vigilance commission (CVC) is likely to be given the authority to report discrepancies or frauds in any public sector banks, in the wake of the Syndicate Bank bribery scam revealed by the Central Bureau of Investigation’s.

Central vigilance officers (CVOs) will be given the authority to constantly monitor and bring frauds to the notice of bank boards, and if required, to the parent ministry as well.

CBI arrested Syndicate Bank CMD SK Jain for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs. 50 lakh for enhancing credit limit for certain companies. Jain was subsequently suspended from his post by the finance ministry.

The CVO issue is likely to be discussed in detail with the Reserve Bank of India.

“While it is unfair to generalise the Syndicate Bank case, the finance ministry and the RBI are looking at various ways to ensure that there is greater accountability and less chance of such a crime being repeated…the CVO could be given more authority to detect such incidents,” an official told HT. 

The finance ministry has  meanwhile sought a detailed report on the Syndicate Bank case from the CBI. “A concrete decision would be taken only after we receive the full report on the case,” a senior finance ministry official said.

Earlier, there were talks of reducing the role of CVC to provide greater autonomy to the bank boards. The official said giving the CVC more authority would not undermine bank boards.

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