PMC Bank promoters' assets to be auctioned to repay depositors: FM

78% depositors can now withdraw entire account balance, says Sitharaman
PMC Bank promoters' assets to be auctioned to repay depositors: FM
PMC Bank promoters' assets to be auctioned to repay

ITDC INDIA EPRESS / ITDC NEWS Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday informed in the Lok Sabha that the government has allowed the Reserve Bank of India to auction the attached properties of PMC Bank's promoters to fast track payments to troubled depositors. The finance minister added that nearly 78 per cent depositors of PMC Bank are now allowed to withdraw their entire account balance.

"We have ensured that the attached properties of the promoters can be given to RBI under certain conditions, so those properties can be auctioned out and the money can be given to depositors," Sitharaman said.

Sitharaman's statement comes in the backdrop of a court order allowing the RBI-appointed administrator for the PMC Bank to sell two airplanes and a yacht belonging to HDIL group firms owned by Rakesh Wadhawan and his son Sarang, the prime accused in the Rs 4,355-crore scam at the cooperative lender.

The administrator had moved the court, seeking its direction to sell the movable assets attached by the probe agencies in connection with the scam at the PMC Bank. "If the amount, by selling the properties, comes to the loan account of the accused, it would be helpful to the depositors to some extent," the administrator had said in the court.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED), which is probing the scam along with the EOW, has attached the movable properties of the Wadhawans.  These properties comprise 15 luxury cars, a seven- seater speedboat, besides two aircraft and yacht belonging to HDIL and its promoters.

The ED had earlier told the court that it did not have any objection for disposal of two airplanes and a yacht by the PMC administrator.

However, with regards to the sale of other seized items, the ED had said that these properties are subject to sale only on confirmation by the adjudicating authorities as per the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering (PMLA) Act.

The Wadhawans had also given their consent to dispose of the movable assets through their letter dated October 16, 2019. So far, nine persons have been arrested in connection with the scam, including three top officials of the bank and auditors.

The RBI had on September 24 imposed operational curbs on PMC Bank and appointed an administrator following detection of alleged financial irregularities.

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