While Citibank has claimed that higher officials are not involved in the hi-profile Rs 400-crore customer fraud scam hatched by relationship manager Shivraj Puri, the police have now pointed the needle of suspicion on two senior bank executives.
Head of the Gurgaon branch Amit Zarpuri and investment counsellor Nitin Chawla allegedly even received kick-
backs from Puri to the tune of Rs 31 lakh.
According to the police, the duo had been receiving money from Puri from September 2009 when he opened a joint account in the name of his grandparents Prem Nath, Sheila Prem Nath and mother Deeksha Puri in Citibank itself.
Investigators also feel it was not possible for Puri's misdeeds to have gone unnoticed by bank officials for this long
and they must have be been aware.
Services of the Zarpuri and Chawla were suspended by the Citibank management after the fraud came to the fore in early December.
They are likely to be called to the police station for questioning and may also be arrested, sources said.
According to sources, the chartered accountancy firm assisting the Gurgaon police has tracked down the transactions of Zarpuri and Chawla who are believed to have received R18 lakh and R3 lakh, respectively, in installments from the main accused.
Puri made all payments to his seniors through cheque.
The police however, have not been able to find any cash transactions between Puri and the duo.
At present, Puri is serving judicial custody in the Gurgaon jail in Bhondsi village along with associate vice-president of Hero Corporate Service Limited Sanjay Gupta, who was arrested on charges of routing money of investors into the stock market through Puri on the basis of a forged SEBI letter.
According to sources, Zarpuri and Chawla not only knew of Puri's fraud but also took benefit of it.
It is also alleged that the Gurgaon branch head would endorse the name of Puri for organisation awards and also declared him one of the best performers nationally and even internationally.