Saturday, Apr 13, 2024 | Last Update : 06:33 AM IST

  Metros   Mumbai  01 Apr 2017  Retired High Court Justice to probe co-op bank scam

Retired High Court Justice to probe co-op bank scam

THE ASIAN AGE. | AMEY TIRODKAR
Published : Apr 1, 2017, 1:38 am IST
Updated : Apr 1, 2017, 6:42 am IST

Sources say the scam figures could be anywhere between Rs 1000 crore and Rs 35000 crore.

Cooperative minister Subhash Deshmukh announced about the committee in the assembly on Friday. He said that the ongoing probe would be completed within a year. (Representational image)
 Cooperative minister Subhash Deshmukh announced about the committee in the assembly on Friday. He said that the ongoing probe would be completed within a year. (Representational image)

Mumbai: The state government on Friday said that a one-member committee of a retired high court Justice would be appointed to investigate the alleged state cooperative bank scam. Names of several top leaders like Ajit Pawar (NCP), Vijaysingh Mohite-Patil (NCP), Pandurang Fundkar (BJP) Manikrao Thakare (Congress), Vijay Vadettivar (Congress) appeared in the cooperative bank scam.

Apart from these, several other politicians were directors of cooperative banks when the financial irregularities took place.

Sources say the scam figures could be anywhere between Rs 1000 crore and Rs 35000 crore. The Maharashtra government had initiated a probe in the scam in 2015.

Cooperative minister Subhash Deshmukh announced about the committee in the assembly on Friday. He said that the ongoing probe would be completed within a year.

Mr Deshmukh said 3,500-page report prepared by the state cooperative department is ready. “But investigation is taking time as 2000 cases need to be probed in this matter,” he said.  Questions about the alleged financial irregularities in the state cooperative banks were asked in assembly. The ruling party MLAs were furious as its been over two years and the probe is far from over. Mr Deshmukh explained that the delay in investigation is due to largest number of cases. However, the MLAs were not satisfied by the minister’s reply. They asked him to expedite the probe.

Mr Deshmukh said, “The government will appointment a retired justice of the high court to investigate the matter independently. We will ask him to complete investigation in six months,” Mr Deshmukh said. The financial irregularities in Maharashtra’s cooperative banks rocked the state politics in 2011 when the then chief minister Prithviraj Deshmukh ordered to scrap director body of these ailing banks. The NCP, which was then partner of Mr Chavan’s Congress government, had total control over the cooperative banks in the state for several decades. The financial condition of these banks deteriorated after 1998-99 as money to sugar mills, weaving mills and etc were given with political intentions.

The surge in directors and their expenses also raise several eyebrows. Many senior leaders of all political parties who were directors of the bank over the period came under heavy fire. Senior BJP leader Anil Gote interrupted Mr Deshmukh saying that revenue minister Chandrakant Patil had assured the house in 2015 that that investigation would be completed by May 22, 2016.

“It’s 2017 and the government is seeking one more year to complete the probe,” Mr Gote said.

Tags: ajit pawar, subhash deshmukh, manikrao thakare, cooperative bank scam