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    Celebs, netas used cash at Nirav stores, raid revealed


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    • What officials stumbled on was a virtual list of who's who from India's glamour industry and some prominent personalities who were making cash purchases from his stores.
    • There were also politicians about whom tax officials picked up useful information including a lawyer-MP, a source told TOI.

    Last year, when the tax department raided companies linked to Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi - high profile jewellers now on the run - it was looking for concrete information on a possible tax dodge by Modi, often seen rubbing shoulders with Bollywood and Hollywood celebrities.



    What officials stumbled on was a virtual list of who's who from India's glamour industry and some prominent personalities who were making cash purchases from his stores. There were also politicians about whom tax officials picked up useful information including a lawyer-MP, a source told TOI.


    The post-demonetisation swoop came amid the government's crackdown on sectors where cash was regularly used to buy jewellery and high value goods. As the investigations revealed, there was indeed evidence of widespread use of cash to mask actual amounts paid. "A part of the payment was made by cards or cheque and a large amount was in cash," said an official. Sources said it is common practice for many businessmen to pay celebrities by way of "gifts", which need to be added to their income. While the focus is on Modi and his companies, in future, the information is expected to come handy as the income tax department builds a strong dossier before conducting searches or initiating action against tax evaders revealed in the Modi raids.


    The information has seen income tax authorities swiftly move to follow up raids conducted across at least 50 premises. The crackdown is part of action initiated against several gems and jewellery firms, which were suspected to have profited after demonetisation was announced on November 8 and undertook large scale cash transactions.


    https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/62954503.cms



    Why was this hidden till Mr. Mody ran away?
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    PMO alerted about Rs 9800-crore in dodgy loans to Mehul Choksi in 2016, claims businessman.



    The Rs 11400 crore PNB scam brings big questions to the fore.

    Firstly, for the banking industry, which keeps boasting how risk averse it is - thanks to robust internal protocols and risk management practices.

    Secondly, how a scam as large as $1.77 billion (Rs 11400 crore) could have been pulled off without any alarm bells ringing.

    Thirdly, how a lowly deputy manager could be the central figure in the scam at Punjab and National Bank.

    The fourth and newly emerging question is the repercussions it could have for the central government.

    More so since the election season is ahead and the ruling party has always been keen on projecting itself as a taint-free party.

    It is in this backdrop that the Prime Minister's Office's (PMO's) perceived failure to treat a complaint seriously might come back to haunt the BJP and possibly Narendra Modi too.

    The PMO's office, prima facie from reports, seemed to have been alerted of bad loans to the tune of "Rs 9800-crore plus on meagre assets of Rs 25-30 crores" to Mehul Choksi as early as 2016 by a businessman Hari Prasad, who claimed to have been cheated by Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi. The Moneycontrol website pub


    Read more at: http://www.sify.com/finance/pmo-aler...AQjjiegga.html
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    In the midst of a raging controversy over the Rs.11,500 banking scam, a video has surfaced of Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosting fugitive Gujarati jeweller Mehul Choksi at his official residence in 2015.

    The video clip put out by online
    newsportal GoNews shows Choksi, Chairman and MD, Gitanjali Group, seated among the audience at the Prime Minister's 7, RCR residence, now called 7 Lok Kalyan Marg.

    The event, which took place on November 5, 2015, was to unveil three schemes aimed at dampening physical demand for gold in the country and tap into an estimated 20,000 tonnes of the yellow metal lying idle with households and institutions in India.

    "People should take advantage of the golden opportunity to help India march to a golden period," Modi said, announcing the schemes.

    "A buyer will go to the biggest showroom to buy jewellery but will get it checked by his family jeweller. Our Mehul Bhai is sitting here. He would know, the buyer would go to his own jeweller to get it checked," Modi says with his trademark laughter in the video.

    <span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: calibrifont, calibri, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; background-color: rgb(243, 243, 243);">



    Read more at: http://www.sify.com/finance/modi-hos...ahjggibee.html
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    Perhaps the other side of the coin..!!

    HIGH LIGHTS

    The BJP charged that the Congress has a track record in corruption and was now attempting to mislead people with false allegations

    Sitharaman alleged that Congress leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, have promoted and benefited from the scam

    Congress has laid the blame for the Rs 11,800 crore scam squarely on the NDA government
    Nirav Modi fraud case: 'Original sin' committed during UPA tenure, alleges BJP

    NEW DELHI: Mounting a scathing attack on the Congress party over the Nirav Modi fraud case+ , the BJP today claimed that the "original sin" was committed during the tenure of the erstwhile UPA regime in 2011.

    The saffron party said the Congress, which has laid the blame+ for the Rs 11,800 crore scam squarely on the NDA government, has a track record in corruption and was now attempting to mislead people with false allegations.

    "Congress indulges in such scandalous affairs, misuses important positions in government, then quietly covers up everything they do. Instead of explaining how it happened during their period, they're casting allegations. Original sin in this episode of Nirav Modi was committed in 2011," senior BJP leader and defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman told mediapersons at a press briefing.
    Armed with a sheaf of documents, Sitharaman alleged that senior UPA functionaries, including Congress president Rahul Gandhi, had promoted and benefited from the scam, in which billionaire diamond merchant Nirav Modi and his business partner Mehul Choksi are prime suspects.

    "Gitanjali Gems was suspended for 6 months from doing business on NSE in 2013. On 13 Septemeber 2013, Rahul Gandhi attends a promotion event of this jewellery group. On 15 September 2013, a proposal of restructuring and giving additional loans to the tune of Rs 1,500 crore to the same jewellery group is mooted in Allahabad Bank board meeting. Join the dots," said Sitharaman.


    Read more at: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/62959821.cms
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    What is so wrong with cash?
    I only use cash for any purchase.
    Since we can never carry too much cash so it limits our expenditure.
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    What was the UPA doing during its tenure....??

    And why this raid now and why this scam is coming to surface now...??

    Such questions may throw more light in finding out the truth
    Nirav Modi’s massive Rs 11,000 crore financial fraud finally reaches the Congress party’s doorstep

    The Punjab National Bank (PNB) and the Indian banking system as a whole has been left shaken by a massive Rs 11,000 crore financial fraud allegedly perpetrated by diamond trader Nirav Modi and his entities, with the help of fraudulent Letter of Undertaking’s (LOU).

    Soon after the news of the fraud, which incidentally was perpetrated since 2011 broke, the Congress party decided to desperately link it to Narendra Modi by claiming that Nirav Modi met the PM in the Davos economic summit this year.

    As the fraud had started since 2011 it was a matter of time before the troubles began for the UPA government. Yesterday it was reported that the former Finance secretary Rajiv Takru, working under the erstwhile UPA government had tried to “silence” the PNB whistleblower in 2013. Besides this, it has been alleged that Finance Minister P Chidambaram himself had signed the whistleblower’s termination letter.

    Further news reports claimed that an unnamed Congress leader was involved in cash deals with Nirav Modi’s stores during the demonetisation period, raising question over the suspicious nature of these transactions.
    Read more at: http://www.opindia.com/2018/02/nirav...rtys-doorstep/

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    'Wife of Congress Leader is a Shareholder', Alleges Sitharaman

    Addressing a press conference on the Nirav Modi fraud case, Defence Minister Niramala Sitharaman alleged that the property which houses Fire Star Diamond International Pvt Ltd belongs to one Advait Holding Ltd, where Anita Singhvi is a shareholder since 2002.

    Anita Singhvi is the wife of Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi.

    And also has Avishkar Manas Singhvi, possibly his son. But wife of one of the senior Congress leaders is here as a property shareholder, she is a director by designation.

    Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman


    Read more at: https://www.thequint.com/news/india/...e-live-updates
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    Just sharing the message as received thro WhatsApp....

    What actually happened in PNB scam? Let’s start from the concept.


    First, The Concept


    Let’s understand how things work.


    Some importer, let’s call him Nirav Modi or NM, wants to import pearls or diamonds and then sell them. The purchase requires money, so NM approaches a bank, say Punjab National Bank (PNB).


    PNB says look, I’ll give you a loan but it will be like at 10%.


    NM thinks hard and says, no, that’s too much. Wait, why don’t I take a foreign currency loan instead, after all I’m buying in dollars? Much lower interest rates no? I can get at LIBOR+2% and LIBOR is like 1.5% so I’ll have the money at 3.5%!


    But who will give NM a foreign currency loan? A bank abroad? They don’t know NM. They don’t have any history of NM, so why will they give him money?


    SO NM goes to PNB and says, boss, you’re my banker, so please help some foreign bank give me some money to buy diamonds. Say that you will guarantee my loan by giving me a “Letter of Undertaking” (LOU).


    PNB now should be saying look, if you want me to give Rs. 100 cr. guarantee, you give me stuff worth 110 cr. at least. As collateral.


    But PNB, for some strange reason, doesn’t ask for collateral. More on that later.


    So now the foreign bank is ready to lend NM the money. Because PNB will guarantee it. And the foreign bank trusts PNB. Why does it trust PNB?


    Because PNB sends a message on SWIFT – the banking message service – that PNB guarantees Rs. 100 cr. of money for 180 days for Mr. NM at an interest rate of, say, LIBOR + 2%. It’s like a message – written in stone, effectively – that says PNB will pay if NM doesn’t pay.


    In fact the foreign bank trusts only PNB. So it gives the money to PNBs account with it, called by PNB as a “Nostro” – the account that PNB maintains with banks abroad, where the other bank will send money meant for PNB customers.


    PNB’s nostro account gets the money.


    PNB then gives NM the money from the Nostro account, usually paid off to whoever NM is buying his diamonds from. This payment is to someone outside India usually, to fund a purchase of diamonds or whatever.


    Note this carefully: The other bank gives money to PNB’s Nostro account. Not to NM. They don’t care about NM. They only know that PNB has given a guarantee on the SWIFT channel.


    Note: the other bank is nowadays mostly the foreign branches of Indian banks. Because the phoren banks have realized something sinister – that PNB’s guarantee is a strange beast that isn’t backed with much, but we’ll come to that


    The foreign bank couldn’t care less about whether NM was buying diamonds or bitcoin – to them, PNB would pay back even if NM’s bitcoin wallet got stolen.


    Why does PNB give a guarantee? Fees. Each year, a bank may charge upto 2% to give the LoU.


    So What Happens When It’s Time To Pay Back?


    NM has to get the pearls in India, sell them, receive the money and pay PNB. On the due date written on the LoU.


    Then PNB will pay back the foreign bank saying okay, we got the customer’s money so we’re giving it back to you. With interest etc.


    That’s what is supposed to happen. But in reality, things went a little berserk, it seems.


    The Reality: A Bit of a Ponzi


    NM might not pay back at all. NM might use the money to speculate in the markets. Or do something else.


    What if NM in the above example simply didn’t have the money to pay back? Instead, he asks a PNB official to open ANOTHER LoU. For the amount owed plus interest. So if we had the first LoU at $10 million the second one is $11 million to cover the interest on the first.


    The money from the second LoU is used to repay the first. It’s just rolling over of credit. Over and over. Standard definition of a ponzi scheme.


    This can easily balloon into a larger amount, so large that it’s too much. In effect many such arrangements have turned into semi-ponzi schemes, with one LoU being opened to repay another and so on.


    Which is what is likely to have happened.


    We don’t know the details, but it looks like:


    Nirav Modi took loans from foreign branches of Indian banks through an LoU issued by PNB


    This was done through a SWIFT based LoU issued through a rogue employee (or many of them) at PNB


    The orders never showed up in the core banking system for monitoring


    LoUs were rolled over all the way since 2011, and possibly increased over time too.


    The rogue official retired in 2017, and the replacement refused to roll over the LoU which came due in Jan 2018 because he couldn’t find the past transactions in the system


    No rollover means a default, since there was no money to pay. So PNB quickly files an FIR saying oh goodness we have lost 280 cr. on the Jan LoUs


    Then someone said, “Abeyaar, is there more of these not-in-system LoUs? Someone check no?”


    Then someone checked.


    Oh gawd. 11,400 crores.


    That’s a lot of crores.


    Everyone in the bank panicked.


    Why couldn’t Nirav Modi just pay it back? He must have the original money no?


    Because if it was ever intended to be paid back, the rollovers wouldn’t have been required. At some point, things got so out of hand that rollovers were required in order to stay current.


    Typically this would not be a problem. If PNB had done things right, they would have had collateral worth the amount of guarantee, and they would have sold that collateral and paid the foreign bank.


    But, and here’s the real issue: PNB didn’t have any collateral.


    Why did PNB give a guarantee without collateral?


    If you and I go for a loan to a bank, they’ll ask us for income proof, and collateral. Only small tiny personal loans and credit card loans come backed without collateral. For something of the order of 11,000 cr. you would think they would ask for collateral.


    Especially after the scene with Mallya where loans to Kingfisher were given on nearly no collateral (though even there they had a house and some promoter shares pledged)


    Why did PNB give this guarantee then? It’s typical – banks give guarantees for more the amount you give as collateral. Because business relationships etc. And then:


    Because nearly every bank is doing it.


    The loan was not a “fund based limit”. In a fund based limit like a term loan, the bank pays out money. In non-fund-based limits, the bank will only pay if someone else defaults or an event happens – like a Bank Guarantee or an LC or an LoU.


    Meaning, PNB assumed that the foreign bank was giving a loan directly to Nirav Modi and that PNB needed to pay only in case Nirav Modi defaulted. So in the eyes of PNB it was always an “non-fund-based” loan.


    But this is how a significant part of import financing works. They all rollover credit, and they all use LoUs for much higher than they can offer as collateral.


    From my sources, the scale is huge. For every Rs. 100 that a bank has collateral, they will easily provide LOUs for upto 6x the amount. This is a real problem – that most public sector banks do not keep much collateral against non-fund-based limits given to importing customers.


    So even if a bank has collateral, it’s nowhere near enough. And then, such unfunded liabilities are not even reported to RBI!


    Basel Reporting: No Disclosure


    PNB has “unfunded” exposure of 11,000 cr. they say. But they don’t even reveal it in their latest Basel III disclosure:


    The funded exposure to “Gems and Jewellery” is shown at 1860 cr.


    Unfunded to the same sector: 842 cr.


    This doesn’t even add up. So, in effect, PNB didn’t reveal that it was funding massive quantities of “unfunded, contingent exposure”. They will of course pretend that they didn’t know, because the transactions weren’t in the core banking system.


    Did Employees Hide it? Was PNB Responsible or was it a fraud?


    Can employees be responsible? Could they have hidden the credit and the rolling over of LoUs? But honestly, how does a 11,000 cr. credit pass muster without top management realizing it?


    Think of it – your nostro account with these other banks keeps getting big credits that add up to 11,000 cr. Will you not reconcile it in the accounting? The “why is this money even here?” question should have been asked by someone who audits accounts, one thinks?


    And the SWIFT messages. It’s a specific kind of message. Why wouldn’t PNB audit the SWIFT trail? Reconcile it with the core banking system? How many more such skeletons will tumble if they do?


    Their excuses are


    Data wasn’t entered into the core banking system. (Of course, otherwise you would have had to report it)


    LOUs weren’t authorized. (Hard to believe, because the amounts are very large. Surely someone on the top would know?)


    The SWIFT system was illegally used. (Again, hard to believe that a bank like PNB would not audit its SWIFT messages regularly. Or its auditors. Or RBI.)


    On the face of it, it looks like the ex-employee is being used as a scapegoat. It’s likely that a lot of people were in on this thing. And that it generated massive, fat fees for PNB all these years.


    Fees wise: Imagine 11,000 cr. worth LoUs being renewed each year – that’s upto Rs. 200 cr. in fees that was all hitting PNB’s top line. You could bribe an employee to maybe give you a small increase – say 10-20 cr. but when you hit numbers like 11,000 cr. this is surely something the top management would know.


    What’s the Scale of this scam?


    While PNB reported it as a 11,000 cr. scam, they filed an FIR with the CBI for only Rs. 280 cr. This has probably expanded since then but even if the total outstanding is as much as that, there’s a good chance that the actual loss amount will be lesser.


    All of it will be borne by PNB right now. Whether someone abused their SWIFT usage is not relevant, if PNB’s SWIFT message said they will pay, they have to pay if there is a default.


    But think about the fallout. The problem was that some liabilities were not in the system. There could be more such LoUs. From the same branch or others. Other banks could have such LoUs too. It’s trivial to start looking – and we know that Nirav Modi will not be an isolated case.


    Also, the issue was that the limits had no collateral behind them. If all banks are told to verify their non-fund-based limits and demand collateral against them (say at least 25%) then the scale would be absolutely massive. It’s not like this is happening only with Nirav Modi or Choksi. A very large number of importers of commodities have been doing this, and rotating credit. A change in regulation here can change the game dramatically for every other bank (and import account) in the system.


    The simple point: this particular transaction will result in a lower loss than 11,000 cr. for PNB. Because of recoveries and such. But if RBI asks all banks to pull up collateral on such lending and stop such practices, the scale is many times larger.


    What about the PNB stock?


    It’s fallen 17%. But note that it already has 60,000 cr. of gross NPAs. Another 11,000 cr. will hurt it but not kill it. It won’t die – the government will take it over. Shareholders might suffer, but come on as a shareholder of a public sector bank you’re used to suffering.


    The problem really is: There is never just one cockroach. When you go deeper, you are likely to find more dirty, dark secrets, and none of them will be any good.


    PNB is gonna hurt for a while, but so are others who will find their books similarly tarnished once they investigate.


    Will This Bring The Market Down?


    Have you been living under a rock? Nothing will ever bring the market down, nowadays.


    But the one thing that does bring markets down is the outflow of liquidity. What if so much of the “ponzi” credit – essentially money that was rolled over very month – is being invested directly, or indirectly, into stocks? If RBI tightens up, liquidity will pull money out of stocks, and that will hurt.


    Of course, this hurts the fiscal deficit since PNB has to be rescued. So bond yields are up to 7.6% and therefore we’d avoid any long term funds or bonds. Short term it will have to be.


    But overall, we wouldn’t worry too much. Just react, don’t predict. What would you do if stocks fell? Better to answer that than to say they will, or they will not.


    (And no, not buying PNB)


    Our View: Fix it.


    This is the Indian public sector banking system. Fix it.


    How can you have transactions on SWIFT outside CBS? Fix it.


    Why would you not reconcile the nostro accounts? Suspend the auditors. Fire top management. Fix it.


    Closing the door behind Modi, who’s already left the country, is probably useless. If you find fraud, invoke their personal guarantees, and file cases to attach their personal properties. After that, file in NCLT to make these companies insolvent. Take the hit, and try to recover.


    Find out more such instances where collateral cover is too low. Find out if the LoUs or LCs are just getting rolled over or is the customer actually paying back through the Indian current account. And if not, demand more collateral to avoid further spread of the ponzi.


    But this is quite unlikely to happen because the banking system is going to take massive hits now, and we’re going to have to deal with the fallout of really horrible systems. It’s amazing that our banks have been this lax, but they have been allowed to; with no bankers being investigated, the rot inside the banks has been ignored and instead, industrialists have been the target of outrage. It’s time to look at banks as malicious players too, and to fix that rot.


    Source: WhatsApp
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    Such scams are coming to light now Why...?

    The other Party perhaps had many skeleton in the cup board and slept conveniently all these time.....but not any more...
    Nirav Modi-PNB fraud case: Not just Modi govt, why Rahul Gandhi must also blame Congress-led UPA




    However, by alleging that Nirav Modi looted India of Rs 12,000 crore, Rahul Gandhi has also blamed the Congress-led UPA government of the scam.

    Talking to India Today, BJP's in charge of national information and technology Amit Malviya retorted to Rahul Gandhi's charge. He said, "Rahul Gandhi had attended Nirav Modi's bridal jewellery event in 2013 in a Delhi hotel," and added that they had proofs of that moment.

    Malviya said the PNB detected the fraud and approached Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and CBI for investigation in line with new stricter banking norms.

    "This fraud has been happening since 2011, and was detected only now," he said.

    Read more at: https://www.indiatoday.in/india/stor...137-2018-02-15
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