ACB files charge sheet in Rs 250 cr loan scam
Srinagar: The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Tuesday produced a charge-sheet against three people including former chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Cooperative Bank for sanctioning a Rs 250 crore loan to a non-existent cooperative housing society two years ago.
“The ACB filed a charge-sheet against Mohammad Shafi Dar, the then chairman of J&K State Cooperative Bank Limited (JKSTCB), Hilal Ahmad Mir, chairman of non-existent River Jhelum Cooperative House Building Society, Srinagar, and Abdul Hamid Hajam, secretary of the non-existent River Jhelum Cooperative House Building Society, Srinagar,” a spokesperson of the anti-graft body said here.
The ACB registered a case against Dar and others under various sections of Prevention of Corruption Act for allegedly sanctioning a loan to the tune of Rs 250 crore in favour of the non-existent society for the purpose of construction of a satellite township at Shivpora locality in Srinagar bypassing the credit policy of the bank and on the basis of false and fabricated documents.
The ACB investigation revealed that a conspiracy was hatched between Dar, Mir, Hajam, Mohammad Mujib Ur Rehman Ghasi, the then Registrar of Cooperative Societies, J&K, Syed Ashiq Hussain, Deputy Registrar Cooperative Societies and others in creating the fake society in 2018-19 in order to obtain a loan from the bank.
The spokesperson said in furtherance of the conspiracy that was hatched, a fake registration certificate of the society was created by the accused.
Mir then approached Secretary to government, Cooperative department Abdul Majid Bhat through the medium of an application on January 10, 2018 wherein directions were sought from the J&K Cooperative Department to J&K State Cooperative Bank Ltd Srinagar for grant of financial assistance (loan advance) to the tune of Rs 300 crore for the construction of the satellite township, the spokesperson said.
“The conspiracy of routing the application through the office of Registrar of Cooperative Societies was done to camouflage the illegal acts of the accused and give it a stamp of government approval as otherwise there was no such precedence of routing loan application through the office of registrar for sanction of a loan in favour of a cooperative society and neither it was prescribed as mandatory requirement in the cooperative societies act,” he said.
The application of Mir was approved and forwarded to the chairman of J&K Cooperative Bank, Srinagar by Ghasi for the sanction of the loan.
“The chairman of the state cooperative bank in conspiracy with the borrower Hilal Ahmad and others has sanctioned the loan amount of Rs 250 crore in favour of the said fictitious society and out of that Rs 223 crore was released,” the spokesperson said.
The investigation has established that the loan was approved by the then chairman of the bank on the basis of false and forged documents by violating the banking rules and regulations and thereby causing loss of Rs 223 crores plus interest till date to J&K government exchequer and to the J&K cooperative bank and public at large, he said.
The amount was raised by the bank as a loan on the FDRs of JKSTCB Srinagar with the J&K Bank.
The entire loan amount was transferred into the account Mir from where it was transferred through RTGS/NEFT into the accounts of 18 people who are merely presumed to be shareholders/legal heirs of the land measuring nearly 13 hectares in Shivpora.
The spokesperson said during Investigation, of Rs 223 crore loan amount which was transferred into the accounts of 18 land owners, Rs 202 crore has been frozen and the land which was illegally leased out has been attached.