The CBI and ED on Saturday searched the Bank of Baroda in Delhi’s Ashok Vihar after allegations that the branch had illegally transferred Rs 6,172 crore in foreign exchange to Hong Kong.
The transfer of the money was made to Hong Kong, as per preliminary investigations, between August 1, 2014 and August 12, 2015. It has been alleged that there were 8,667 forex transactions from the Ashok Vihar branch of the bank, prompting a probe.
An internal investigation by the bank revealed that the transactions did not trigger alerts such as the generation of an exceptional transaction report.
The Congress alleged the “scam” had put a question mark over Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s commitment on the black money issue and asked him to explain why complaint had not been filed against the bank’s officials.
“The prime minister claims in Bihar that during his 18-month-rule his government can’t be charged with corruption. But at the same time a bank in Delhi transfers Rs 6,172 crore abroad without any proper documentation, which indicates that their claims are hollow. Why is there no FIR filed in the case?” said Congress leader and former minister of state for home RPN Singh.
“The government claims that it has brought Rs 4,000 crore back as black money, but on the other side the Bank of Baroda has transferred Rs 6,172 crore to Hong Kong in the names of 59 companies, all of them registered on wrong addresses,” he said.
Singh said that all that the government has done is remove one bank manager.
“One is forced to wonder as to how a government bank did not adhere to the very basic due diligence as regards deposits, transfers and withdrawals by any entity in any bank,” he asked.
The Bank of Baroda issued a clarification after reports of the raid surfaced. “It is not a raid as being reported, CBI officials have come in for investigation. Currently the matter is being investigated by CBI and internally by the bank, so it is not proper to give any details. But I want to emphasise on the fact that the matter was brought to the notice by the bank itself and there will be no financial implications for the bank,” BB Joshi, executive director of Bank of Baroda, told Hindustan Times.