Swamy approached SC seeking probe against the RBI officials
BJP leader Subramanian Swamy approached Supreme Court seeking probe against the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) officials who were part of the banks’ high volume loans which later turned to be loan frauds or defaulters. In his petition, Swamy pointed out that those RBI officials’ role has to be probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for dereliction and failure to discharge their duties and role of their connivance with the bank loan frauds. His petition, assisted by lawyers M R Venkatesh and Satya Paul Sabharwal, listed out a series of loan frauds and many such cases pending on investigation. The petition reiterated that all such loans are approved by the RBI officials in the Banks’ Boards and hence RBI officials must be probed in giving approval to these high-volume loans.
This is Subramanian Swamy’s second case on banking affairs. His first petition before the Supreme Court was creating guidelines for high volume loan disbursement. Citing Credit Suisse report – House of Debts – Swamy pointed out that India’s top 10 corporate houses have created NPA (Non-Performing Assets) of more than Rs.12 lakh crores and there should be a single body to monitor loans above Rs.100 crores. The BJP MP has sought an immediate hearing in this case.
The petition also said that RBI rejected RTI petitions seeking a list of cases and banks involved in frauds aggregating to Rs.100 crores or more and entered in the RBI Central Fraud Registry from January 1, 2015, till date.
In the current – second case – petition, Swamy suggested that a CBI probe be done into the role of RBI officials and said that without their approval, Banks can’t disburse such high-volume loans. In the petition, Swamy said that officials of the RBI have been in demonstrable active connivance and in grave violations of their statutory duties.
“…no officer of RBI has ever been held accountable for any dereliction of duty in case of any fraud reported by any bank. This is in sharp contrast to the number of frauds exploding in the banking sector in India aggregating to in excess of over Rs.3 lakh crore (Rs three trillion),” the PIL stated.
The petitioners said that in the last couple of years, various banks have reported scams after scams wherein the role of bank officials were clearly made out but surprisingly not even a single RBI official has been brought to justice despite RBI retaining the power to monitor, regulate, supervise, audit and direct the functioning of all banking companies in India.
“Put pithily, the scheme of the Banking Regulation Act makes the Reserve Bank of India the alter ego of Bank Management, more so in case of public sector banks (PSBs). Yet, in none of the high-profile banking scams the Central Bureau of Investigation investigating these scams has not even sought to examine at a cursory level, the role of officials of RBI,” Swamy stated in the PIL.
The petitioner has pointed out various scams including Kingfisher, Bank of Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh – private sugar organisation, Nirav Modi/ Punjab National Bank, Lakshmi Vilas Bank, ILFS, PMC Bank, Yes Bank, First Leasing among others.
“These scams have been caused due to the active connivance of the RBI officials which has failed to prevent these scams despite being vested with substantial powers under various legislations,” Swamy said in the petition.
The petition also said that RBI rejected RTI petitions seeking a list of cases and banks involved in frauds aggregating to Rs.100 crores or more and entered in the RBI Central Fraud Registry from January 1, 2015, till date. The list of cases referred to CBI for frauds amount of Rs.100 crores or more by the respective banks from 01.01.2015 till date. The details of the persons against whom such action has been initiated by the RBI in respect of frauds aggregating to Rs.100 crores or more in each case from 01.01.2015 till date. However, the RBI response to the RTI filed was not satisfactory, said the PIL (Public Interest Litigation) filed by Subramanian Swamy.