Two days after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) booked four officials of Vaidyanath Cooperative Urban Bank Ltd and two doctors over alleged illegal swapping of currency, state women and child development minister Pankaja Munde said everyone will cooperate with investigating officers in the case.
Pankaja’s sister Pritam, who is a BJP MP, is a director of the bank.
The CBI on Friday registered a case against the six people for entering into a conspiracy and illegally transporting Rs25 crore in demonetised currency for changing it to legal tender.
According to Pankaja Munde, the cash seized by the Mumbai police last week, based on which the CBI has registered a case, was part of routine transactions. “The bank officials have categorically told me that the seized money was part of routine transactions… If there is anything wrong, we will fully cooperate with the investigating agency,” said the minister.
The alleged role of two prominent doctors — an oncologist from Mumbai and a doctor who runs a hospital in Aurangabad -- has also surprised many. The CBI has registered a case against them.
The doctors have, however, refuted the CBI charge of entering into a conspiracy and fraudulently transporting the demonetised currency for changing it with new notes.
The oncologist distanced himself from the seized cash and said it belonged to the Aurangabad doctor who brought it for safe-keeping to his apartment at Ghatkopar on December 12. On the same day, officials of Vaidyanath bank came to his flat and collected half of the money, the oncologist said.
Refuting all allegations, the Aurangabad doctor said he had deposited money in the bank on November 12 and 13 while the CBI has booked him for the money seized on December 15.
According to the CBI, the two managers of Vaidyanath bank’s Ghatkopar and Pimpri branch, two other officials and the doctors entered into a conspiracy and “fraudulently transported” around Rs25 crore in demonetised currency from the bank’s head office in Beed to its Ghatkopar branch in Mumbai on November 19 for changing it with new notes.
A sum of Rs15 crore of the total amount was allegedly deposited with Maharashtra State Urban Co-operative Bank and Rs10.10 crore (Rs10 lakh in Rs2,000 denomination and Rs10 crore in old Rs500 notes) was being transported back to Beed in a car when it was intercepted by the Mumbai police.