Billionaire jeweller denies involvement in huge Indian bank fraud

On Monday, the agency questioned four other officials from the Nirav Modi group-chief financial officer Ravi Gupta, vice-president (finance) Vipul Ambani, president of the Nirav Modi group's worldwide finance division Saurabh Sharma and Subhash Parab, a senior finance executive of the Nirav Modi group.

At least three people, including two junior bank employees, have been arrested so far in connection with the fraud which went undetected for seven years. Fitch will resolve the rating watch once more clarity emerges on the extent of control failures and the impact on PNB's financial position, it said. In these cases, the Letters of Credit have been issued for more than 90 days.

The CBI also searched Nirav Modi's Alibaug farmhouse to check if any of the documents or evidence was kept there PNB, in its first FIR, had put the value of the fraud at R280 crore; probe, however, revealed it to be to the tune of over Rs 6,000 crore. A FIR was lodged against Modi and Choksi, and Modi's wife Ami and his brother were also named in it.

Mallya had fled the country in March, 2016 after the CBI diluted its lookout circular against him.

Ever since the PNB scam has unfolded, security agencies have begun its crackdown on the properties of Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, but have been clueless about their whereabouts.

" Whatever is recorded", Aggarwal stated of Modi's transactions with PNB, including that the state-owned bank had actually routinely imposed costs on its negotiations with the jeweller's companies.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) are probing the matter and conducting searches and raids at various locations linked with Nirav Modi and Gitanjali Gems.

The Central Vigilance Commission on Monday summoned senior officials from the Punjab National Bank to discuss the alleged lapses in monitoring that led to the scam.

Fearing the likelihood of sabotage to the data in the PNB's Brady House branch, CBI had briefly sealed the premises late on Sunday. Neither did he make any entry in the Core Banking Solutions.

Based on these instructions and guarantees, funds were released by overseas branches of Indian banks.

The application points out "that Mr. Joshi, manager scale-II, Forex Dept, PNB during the period of 2015 to 2018, did not deliberately submit daily reports in respect of SWIFT messages and aided and abetted in the conspiracy to cheat PNB to of hundreds of crores of rupees".

Questions range from how junior employees in PNB got away with the fraud for years and whether senior management knew what was going on.

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The plea has asked for a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the banking fraud, allegedly involving billionaire jewellers Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi.

  • Julie Sanders