India, US come together to combat terror funding

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 12, 2015 23:44 IST

India and the US on Thursday decided to further boost efforts to address the issue of illicit money transfers for terrorism, money laundering and other illegal activities.

The agreement came after the 5th Indo-US Economic and Financial Partnership Dialogue, attended by the US treasury secretary Jacob J Lew and finance minister Arun Jaitley.

Besides Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT) and Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed’s Jammat-ud-Dawa (JuD), the two nations identified Jaishe-e-Mohammad, the Haqqani Network, D-Company, Al Qaida and ISIL among terror networks whose fundings have to be cut off.

Besides, Jaitley also said that BJP’s defeat in the Delhi Assembly elections will not slow down the pace of economic reforms. “The fact that four elections have been won, and one has not, is absolutely no ground for believing that there will be any slowdown on the path that we have taken.”

RBI governor Raghuram Rajan and US Federal Reserve vice-chairman Stanley Fischer, too, attended the deliberations that agreed for information sharing between the two countries and cooperation on terror financing.

“We reiterated our commitment to target the financial networks and fund-raising activities of terrorist organisations such as LeT, JuD, Jaishe-e-Mohammad, the Haqqani Network, D-Company, Al Qaida, ISIL, and individual terrorists associated with these organisations,” a government statement said.

Reports have earlier said that Iranian oil export revenues have been siphoned out of UCO Bank, leading to suspicions of a money-laundering scheme. It has been said that a group of people from Iran and Azerbaijan, came to India on student visas and sought loans from UCO Bank against export invoices that were never followed by actual deliveries.

UCO Bank has denied any involvement in the process.
Jaitley said the particular case was not discussed. “This issue has been brought to our notice and the concerned authorities, including the central bank, have taken appropriate action.”

RBI has already directed banks to keep an eye on advances paid against trade invoices.

Pointing out that India and US shared common threats, Lew said: “We share a common commitment to work together to try as best we can to shut down the flow of funding to those who would commit terrorist acts.”

Meanwhile, Jaitley also said the economy is poised to grow by 7.4% in 2014-15 compared to 6.9% in 2013-14 based on the new formula to calculate GDP.

(With agency inputs)

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