Former PMC Bank MD exploited bank as his personal property: EOW officials
The audit also revealed that Thomas allegedly availed loan of around Rs13 crore for HDIL’s promoters without maintaining any official records.Updated: Dec 15, 2019 05:34 IST
After many functioning irregularities surfaced during a recent forensic audit of Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank, officials of the city Economic Offences Wing (EOW) believe that PMC’s former managing director Joy Thomas “exploited the bank as if it was his personal property” and allegedly violated many banking norms.
“The audit revealed that Thomas used to avail money for Housing Development and Infrastructure Limited (HDIL) and would make post-dated loan documents and get it approved from the directors. He would also make post-dated minutes of the board of directors meeting. Most of the directors knew about this,” said an EOW officer.
Explaining the extent to which Thomas went to favour HDIL, another EOW officer said, “He would get the loan approved for one company of the HDIL and would make cheques of the approved loan in another HDIL company’s name. Then the money would be further routed to some other account.”
It is possible that the money was utilised for purposes different than it was approved for, he added.
The audit also revealed that Thomas allegedly availed loan of around Rs 13 crore for HDIL’s promoters without maintaining any official records. “Whenever the Wadhawans required huge cash, they would approach the bank and give cheques. Thomas would allow them to take the money without even processing the cheques. This is how around Rs 13 crore in cash was availed forthem. Thomas never processed the 22 cheques the Wadhawans gave the bank [as repayment]. Later, they returned Rs 3 crore but the rest [Rs10 crore] remained unpaid. Police have seized these cheques,” said an EOW officer on condition of anonymity.
“When we asked Thomas why he had favoured HDIL to such an extent, he said he didn’t want the bank to lose its biggest customer,” added the officer.
A senior police officer said that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is regularly conducting meetings with the authorities concerned and eyes to auction HDIL’s huge land parcel in Palghar. HDIL has around 842 acres in Palghar, out of which charge on 600 acre portion (worth nearly Rs 2,400 crore) is clear and RBI intends to auction it to recover the loan amount. The RBI administrator of the bank recently sought a No Objection Certificate from HDIL’s chief finance officer. Police are now awaiting the report of forensic auditing of HDIL companies which will put light on alleged kickbacks received by the bank’s management.