Other States

3 SBI officials booked for kisan card fraud

The Central Bureau of Investigation has booked three branch managers of the State Bank of India in Uttar Pradesh’s Lucknow for allegedly siphoning off funds from the exchequer by sanctioning Kisan Credit Card (KCC) loans on forged documents. The agency has been pursuing multiple cases of KCC loan fraud involving hundreds of crores.

In its complaint, the State Bank of India identified the accused officials as Kamal Kumar Srivastava, Ansul Mendiratta and Awadhesh Srivastava, who were managers with its Kakori branch in Lucknow. They, along with the bank’s empanelled advocate Prakash Chandra Vidyarthi and one Gole Dwivedi, have been arraigned in the FIR.

An internal inquiry into the alleged irregularities in KCC accounts revealed that the officials had sanctioned and disbursed 96 loans under the scheme during 2014-17, totalling ₹6.60 crore.

A part of the funds was transferred to the account of Mr. Dwivedi, indicating diversion. The agency has now initiated investigations to determine the extent of the scam. It will also examine the role of several other suspects in the case.

Credit support

The KCC scheme, launched in 1998, is for providing credit support to farmers for their needs such as cultivation, post-harvest expenses, marketing of produce, maintenance of farm assets and allied activities. As per the 2019 data, there were 66.2 million operative KCC accounts.

Earlier, in March 2018, the CBI had registered three cases related to misappropriation of ₹743 crore through KCC and pisciculture loans from the IDBI Bank’s branches in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Among the 44 accused were two Deputy General Managers and an empanelled valuer.

Assets attached

Earlier this month, based on the CBI probe, the Enforcement Directorate attached assets worth ₹51 crore of a businessman and his family members. The accused had fraudulently availed himself of KCC loans to the tune of ₹69.46 crore in the name of 87 borrowers, who were his relatives, employees and acquaintances, by submitting his property papers. The funds were diverted and invested in properties.

In yet another case registered in October 2017, the CBI had accused some officials of the Bank of Baroda and the Madhya Pradesh government of fraud in disbursing loans to 139 farmers between 2013 and 2015. Four then managers of UCO Bank in Chhattisgarh had also come under the scanner for sanctioning loans on forged documents between 2011 and 2015.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2021 3:14:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/3-sbi-officials-booked-for-kisan-card-fraud/article30551914.ece

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