Mumbai: Observing that depositors and accounts holders of the Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative Bank (PMC) suffered unbearable financial and mental agony which has to be considered sensitively, a sessions court has denied bail to Sarang Wadhawan, who was at the helm of Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd. (HDIL) - the bank’s biggest borrower.
Additional Sessions Judge SM Tapkire said in the order that the record prima facie shows that Sarang and his father “actively participated” in the crime. “Due to their illegal activities, the bank has suffered a huge loss of Rs6,000 crore, it added. Thus, the entire structure and foundation of the bank have collapsed and disturbed,” it observed. The court said further that ultimately the entire depositors and account holders have suffered unbearable, financial, mental pain, loss, and agony. The same is also required to be considered sensitively. “I felt that such practice would certainly be harmful to the economy of the state and the same is required to be deprecated,” Judge Tapkire’s order stated, noting that Sarang, his father and their HDIL group of Companies are the beneficiaries of the alleged scam.
The case that was first registered at Bhandup police station was transferred to the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police. The bank’s managing director Joy Thomas, its chairman Waryam Singh, HDIL directors Sarang Wadhawan and his father Rakesh Wadhawan are among the accused. The accused are booked for cheating, criminal conspiracy, forgery and under provisions of the MPID Act among other offences. The police allege that during 2008 and 2019, HDIL borrowed from the bank to the tune of Rs4,335 crore and did not repay the amount. The accused intentionally reported false information and records to the RBI and suppressed the actual position of the dues, to the detriment of the bank and its depositors.
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