IT raids Axis Bank branch, seizes 20 accounts with Rs 60 crore

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Income tax officials on Thursday morning raided an Axis Bank branch in Noida and seized 20 fake accounts with deposits amounting to Rs 60 crore, police said.

The raid was conducted around 10 am at an Axis Bank branch in Sector-51.

A police officer said the seized accounts has been created using the names of fake companies and some low-income individuals.

“IT officials found that the directors or owners of these fake companies are daily labourers,” an officer said.

He added that the fake accounts came to the IT department’s notice when a Noida jeweller, who sold gold worth Rs 600 crore after the November 8 demonetisation announcement, had deposited the money at the Noida branch.

“Most of the money has reached the jeweller through RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement system),” the official said.

Read: Take strict action against employees if they indulge in wrongdoing: FinMin to banks

Earlier, IT officials also recovered over Rs 100 crore from 44 suspect accounts in an Axis Bank branch in Chandni Chowk area in Delhi.

A court Delhi court also sent Vineet Gupta, now suspended Branch Manager in Axis Bank’s Kashmere Gate branch in Delhi, and Rajeev Kumar Kushwaha, alleged to be the mastermind behind floating of shell companies, to judicial custody till December 26.

The third arrested accused, 33-year-old Shobit Sinha, now suspended manager(operations) in the bank, is also in judicial custody till the same day.

They were accused of converting about Rs 40 crore in demonetised notes into gold through banking channels and are booked under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

According to the ED, Gupta and Kushwaha were allegedly involved in converting black money into white by reportedly misusing banking transfer systems like RTGS and NEFT in the wake of the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes.

The ED has contended its probe revealed that Rs 40 crore worth of currency and several companies were involved in the case, and one gold brick worth Rs 39 lakh has been recovered from Sinha and another is yet to be recovered.