Ex-chairman of J&K Cooperative Bank arrested in Rs 223 cr loan fraud

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SRINAGAR: The Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB), on Wednesday arrested the former chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Cooperative Bank Limited (JKCBL), Mohammad Shafi Dar in connection with the Rs 223-crore loan scam.

Ex-chairman of J&K Cooperative Bank Mohammad Shafi Da

An official spokesman said that a Preliminary enquiry (PE) was conducted by the Anti Corruption Bureau, Jammu on the allegations that the Chairman of in connivance with the officials/beneficiary of a non-existent Co-operative House Building Society had sanctioned an amount of Rs. 223 crores fraudulently in favour of the said non-existent Co-operative Society under the name and style of a “River Jhelum Co-operative House Colony at Shivpora Srinagar” shown/run by one Hilal Ahmad Mir S/O Kh. Sana-ullah Mir a resident of Magarmal Bagh Srinagar (Beneficiary).

In the preliminary inquiry, it was revealed that the chairman of the Society had moved an application to Secretary Cooperatives, Administration Department of Co-operative Societies, seeking directions to the J&K Cooperative Bank Ltd for grant of financial assistance to the tune of Rs 300 crores for taking over possession of 300 kanals of land located in the outskirts of Srinagar for construction of a Satellite Township.

The application was endorsed to Registrar Cooperative Societies J&K for taking up the matter with Jammu and Kashmir State Cooperative Bank.

Accordingly, J&K Co-operative Bank Srinagar sanctioned a loan to the tune of Rs. 223 crores without adhering to any codal formalities, i.e obtaining the details of the Society Viz. Balance Sheet, Profit and loss Account business, activities being done by the Society, PAN No., Income Tax return, details of Construction of the Board Resolutions, etc.

During enquiry it also surfaced that River Jhelum Cooperative House Building Society has not been even registered with Registrar Co-operative Societies J&K. “The Chairman of the so called River Jhelum Cooperative House Building Society Ltd. Hilal Ahmad Mir by acting in league with Chairman of J&K Co-operative Bank Srinagar and others had prepared a fake and fictitious Registration Certificate in the name of Society and managed the sanction of loan to the amount of Rs 223 crores,” an official spokesperson said.

“The above-mentioned acts of omission and commission on the part of Mohammad Shafi Dar Chairman J&K State Cooperative Bank, Raj Bagh, Srinagar and others in conspiracy with Hilal Ahmad Mir S/o Sana-ullah Mir R/O Magarmal Bagh, Srinagar constitute and offences punishable u/s 5(1)(d) r/w section 5(2) P.C. Act and sections 465, 467, 468, 471, 120-B RPC, resulting in loss of Rs. 223 crores to the Bank. Accordingly, FIR No. 04/2020 P/S ACB was registered and investigation taken up,” he said.

“During the investigation, it has been found that the so-called Society has not been registered with Registrar Co-operative Societies J&K. Accused Hilal Ahmad Mir had managed to get issued a fake and fictitious Registration certificate bearing Registration No. ARK/SS/3, dated 31.03.1994 and on the basis of that fake and fictitious Certificate of Registration loan to the tune of Rs. 223 crores was sanctioned in favour of the non-existent society without adhering to the codal formalities and without any proper security,” he added.

“The loan amount was disbursed into the accounts of the landowners but the land has not been mortgaged to the bank. Following further investigation, the ACB has been successful in unearthing the siphoned off funds and an amount to tune of Rs 187 crore have been frozen,” the spokesperson said.

“During the investigation the one accused namely Hilal Ahmad Mir S/o Sanaullah Mir R/o Magarmal Bagh, Srinagar, Chairman of the Jhelum Cooperative House Building Society was arrested on 14-05-2020 to effect the recovery of documents required in the case which are purportedly lying in their possession and also to unearth the modus operandi, and the end-use of funds and quid pro quo if any obtained,” he said.

“Mohammad Shafi Dar, Ex-Chairman, J&K Co-operative Bank Ltd. who was evading arrest since the registration of the case was today arrested and taken into custody by Anti Corruption Bureau and his interrogation is going on,” said an official spokesman.

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