Mumbai

PMC Bank depositors gather at city court to oppose accused’s bail pleas

Around 25 depositors of Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank gathered at the sessions court on Saturday to attend the bail hearing of the six arrested in the case.

The court was hearing bail pleas filed by PMC Bank board members Surjit Singh Arora, Gurnam Singh Hothi, Daljeet Singh Bal and three independent auditors arrested by the Economic Offences Wing. They are alleged to have caused losses of ₹4,635.62 crore to the bank by advancing unsecured loans to the Housing Development and Infrastructure Limited (HDIL) Group.

The depositors gathered in the courtroom as the case came up for hearing and started jeering as the accused were brought in. Justice S. Soor then asked the protesters to leave the premises, after which the accused’s lawyers submitted their bail pleas.

‘Review next week’

Advocate Prashant Maggu, representing the depositors, said, “The court has not granted bail to any of the accused and will be reviewing the pleas next week.” The protesters said they will gather in large numbers at the next hearing, which is scheduled for January 24.

“We will be going to the court again on the next hearing to show the number of people who are victimised by the PMC Bank scam. We are in a do-or-die situation. Many of us are single women, while others have medical problems in the family,” Manjula Kotian, a depositor, said.

Suman Chauhan, another depositor, said scores of people had already lost their lives due to the fraud and more lives cannot be risked by extending leniency to the accused.

“We have already started contacting other depositors, asking them to be present at the court for the next hearing. Depositors will gather in large numbers as everyone has promised that minimum two people from each family will be present,” she said.

The account holders will also be holding a protest on Sunday morning outside the bank’s Bandra branch. From there, the protest will head towards the residence of Rakesh Wadhwan, the director of HDIL.

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Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 8:28:54 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/pmc-bank-depositors-gather-at-city-court-to-oppose-accuseds-bail-pleas/article30597324.ece

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