CBI books ‘farm­ers’ for ₹81 cr. bank loan fraud

They passed off husk as urad dal to get credit fa­cil­i­ties

The Hindu - - TAMIL NADU - S. Vi­jay Kumar

The Central Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion (CBI) has reg­is­tered a case against a group of ‘farm­ers’, who passed off a huge stock of husk as dal and cheated the Lakshmi Vi­las Bank of ₹81.81 crore. The CBI’s Eco­nomic Of­fences Wing has booked 31 bor­row­ers, claim­ing to be farm­ers, in Madurai and Virud­hu­na­gar dis­tricts, on charges of crim­i­nal con­spir­acy, cheat­ing, forgery and fal­si­fi­ca­tion of doc­u­ments to cheat the bank in 2016.

The case is that the so­called

urad

farm­ers con­spired with oth­ers and availed them­selves of credit fa­cil­i­ties un­der the Lakshmi Com­mod­ity Power Scheme of the Lakshmi Vi­las Bank from its Madurai and Virud­hu­na­gar branches. They stocked huge quan­ti­ties of husk in the M/s Star Agri Ware­hous­ing & Col­lat­eral Man­age­ment Ltd., Ra­japalayam, which was nom­i­nated as the stor­age agent of the bank for safe cus­tody of goods, on which the credit fa­cil­i­ties are ex­tended un­der the scheme.

Af­ter the loan ap­pli­cants stored husk in the ware­house, the stor­age agent gave a false cer­tifi­cate that it was dal.

The bank au­thor­i­ties, who be­lieved the cer­ti­fi­ca­tion to be gen­uine, re­leased credit fa­cil­i­ties to the tune of ₹81.81 crore to the bor­row­ers, who mis­ap­pro­pri­ated the same.

The case, ini­tially reg­is­tered by the lo­cal police, was trans­ferred to the CBI by an or­der of the Madras High Court, wherein the court stated that “de­spite a pos­i­tive di­rec­tion to the Ad­di­tional Su­per­in­ten­dent of Police, Virud­hu­na­gar, to ar­rest the prime ac­cused Siva and

urad

Su­rulivel, the Ad­di­tional Su­per­in­ten­dent of Police ap­peared be­fore this court and ex­pressed his in­abil­ity to ar­rest the ac­cused for rea­sons which are not ac­cept­able to this court.”

The court noted that Siva and Su­rulivel were part­ners of M/s Sel­varani Dhall In­dus­tries, the main ben­e­fi­cia­ries. “When the State police had ex­posed their in­ef­fi­ciency and lack of pru­dence by re­port­ing that the com­plaint is not one fit for cog­ni­sance, this court is jus­ti­fied in trans­fer­ring the case to the CBI,” the court had said.

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