July 31, 2020 10:19:10 pm
In possibly the first of its kind case, the Central Bureau of Investigation has arrested a Relationship Manager and Rural Sales Executive of a private sector bank on Thursday for allegedly demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs two lakh to sanction and disburse loan to a customer.
A farmer from Baramati who also runs a business and had applied for a loan of Rs 99 lakh, approached the CBI with a complaint that the bank officials were demanding bribe from him. After preliminary verification, a team from the Anti Corruption Branch of the CBI, Pune laid trap in Baramati on Wednesday evening and arrested the Rural Sales Executive of the HDFC Bank Ganesh Dhaygude red-handed while accepting the bribe of Rs two lakh. Subsequently Relationship Manager Nitin Nikam was arrested, according to the agency.
The CBI said in a press statement, “A case was registered against the Relationship Manager, HDFC Bank, Baramati Branch on a complaint. It was alleged that the Relationship Manager had demanded a bribe of Rs. 2.7 lakh from the complainant for the sanction and disbursement of loan of Rs. 99 lakh from HDFC Bank, Baramati Branch, Pune to the complainant. It was further alleged that the bribe amount was later negotiated to Rs. 2.25 lakh. The accused sent his junior (Rural Sales Executive) to collect the bribe from the complainant. CBI laid a trap and caught the Rural Sales Executive red handed while accepting the bribe of Rs. two lakh from the complainant. The Relationship Manager was also arrested.”
HDFC said in a statement that it would initiate action against its employees and cooperate with the investigation.
“The matter has been brought to our notice. As a responsible corporate, we have zero tolerance towards any such deviations or acts by employees. Appropriate staff action will be initiated and we will also support the police in its investigation,” the bank said.
CBI officials said that searches were conducted at the office and residential premises of accused at Baramati till early hours of Friday.
The primary purview of the Anti Corruption Branch of the CBI is that of cases falling under the Prevention of Corruption Act against Central Government public servants. CBI officials said that in a 2016 judgement, the Supreme Court has ruled that officers of private sector banks to be treated public servants under the Prevention of Corruption Act. CBI officials said that the case is arguably first of its kind case in the country where officers of private sector bank have been arrested under charges of bribery.
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