Terror threats: Banks, markets tighten scrutiny

  • Mahua Venkatesh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 14, 2014 23:13 IST

With increased threats to India from global terror outfits such as Al Qaeda and Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (Isis), Indian banks have tightened their scrutiny over deposits.

Sources said that while Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is set to look into the issue, the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) will soon issue a circular asking banks to keep an eye on high value transactions. The circular will also outline details and additional measures that banks would be required to adopt for monitoring these transactions.

“Banks are geared up for this and while this is an on-going process, the IBA is looking into it considering the fresh threats from these outfits and would soon issue a guideline,” TM Bhasin, chairman, IBA told HT.

After the recent explosion in Burdwan, West Bengal that was traced to Indian Mujahideen and Al Qaeda, a senior government official said that while the security agencies are doing their job, banks have also been asked to be alert.

Most banks have already installed know your customer and anti-money laundering softwares to detect and monitor suspicious transactions. Transactions of over Rs. 1 lakh in a day or Rs. 10 lakh in a month are already being monitored.

Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has also circulated a fresh list of terror outfits to the stock exchanges and asked market entities to keep a close watch on transactions to ensure that the terror outfits do not find their way into Indian capital markets.

“Sebi has informed the exchange about the amendments/addition to UNSC’s Al-Qaida Sanctions List … members are advised to take note of the above and ensure compliance with the same,” BSE said in a circular released last week.

Isis is a terror outfit which controls significant portions of northern Syria and Iraq, where it established the Islamic State caliphate in June this year. ISIS also controls oil-production in this region.

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