Technology
Government lays down advisory for matrimonial websites
Aiming to put an end to the fraudulence on the matrimonial sites, the government on Thursday approved an advisory on functioning of such websites and also made identity proof mandatory to create accounts.
 
Several complaints were lodged with the Ministry of Communications and IT and the Ministry of Women and Child Development, which prompted the government to take this step, according to sources.
 
"Communications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has approved the advisory on functioning of matrimonial websites on Thursday. With this, legal standards of matrimonial sites are laid down clearly," sources said.
 
"The user may be shortly advised to submit or upload the copy of supporting documents such as proof of ID, address for the purpose of identification." 
 
The advisory stated that the matrimonial websites should always store IP address of profile creator for one year even after the account is deleted. It was made mandatory to confirm users' intent to a matrimonial site.
 
It also said the service providers of such sites should also declare on the home page of the site that the website is for matrimonial purpose only and should not have any obscene material.
 
"The website should maintain transparency. It should have fairness in data collection, have an objective to identity proof and have an in-built mechanism of grievance redressal," the source said.
 
"It should also encourage registered users to report fraudulent activities."
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Bombay Mercantile Coop Bank mired in controversial dealings, while regulators watch silently; whistleblower agitated about the bank's future
Investors, employees and shareholders are working overtime to draw attention to the controversial dealings at Bombay Mercantile Cooperative (BMC) Bank but their appeals to every regulator, including the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Registrar of Cooperatives (ROC) seems to fall on deaf ears. 
 
Only in January 2016, Moneylife wrote about a new management being installed at BMC Bank, which seemed determined to ensure a clean-up. But management wrangles ensured that they were thrown out and the previous regime, whose operations came in for action by the RBI and Central ROC is back in the saddle. Worse, although the RBI has imposed stringent conditions on the banks' operations in November 2015 and stopped the bank from sanctioning fresh loans, whistleblowers allege that the management is alienating assets and weakening the bank, which employees over 2,300 persons.
 
There was a meeting of the Bank's Board on 16 May 2016 in which Zeeshan Mehdi and Mohammad Shah Alam Khan were elevated as Chairman and Managing Director, respectively. These directors had been disqualified by the RBI and Central ROC in January 2016 but have still been re-elected. The allegations against these officials, backed by documents provided by whistleblowers are indeed startling. One of the most egregious ones is that Punjab National Bank and Canara Bank have filed criminal complaint against Mr Mehdi, Mr Khan and Salauddin Najmi, Director of BMC Bank, for criminal conspiracy, cheating and criminal misconduct. Surely, this is something that would attract RBI's attention?
 
Here are some of the other allegations levelled against the current top management of BMC Bank by whistleblowers and shareholders.
 
1. The Bank's Branch Manager at Lucknow allegedly issued bank guarantee of Rs54 crore against six allegedly fake FD receipts of Rs9 crore each. Instead of filing a criminal case and further investigation, the Branch Manager was allegedly put under suspension.
 
2. Mr Mehdi, the newly selected Chairman, and his partners allegedly had a credit facility of Rs12 crore from BMC Bank's Lucknow branch, which became stagnant in November 2014. In order to allow Mr Mehdi contest Bank's election held in January 2015, it is alleged that two loans of Rs7.5 crore each were sanctioned to his friend from Lucknow, without following RBI norms and without proper security. It is alleged that at that time, this loan of Rs15 crore was sanctioned to Mr Mehdi's friend/partner to adjust his NPA account for protecting his directorship at the Bank. However, it is alleged that these loans of Rs15 crore too have slipped in to NPA.
 
3. The Bank has allegedly invested Employees Provident Fund money in unlisted companies, thus violating all extent norms of Commissioner of Provident Fund. The investments have allegedly incurred losses of lakhs of rupees.
 
4. There are allegedly about more than Rs50 crore tied up in the Bank's quick mortality accounts.
 
5. Mr Khan, the Bank's MD, has allegedly transferred tenancy rights of the Bank properties (especially at the head office building) without depositing any amount in the Bank's account.
 
6. There are allegations that Mr Khan, the MD, had post facto sanctioned advances worth Rs15 crore to various parties without approval from the Board of Directors. Mr Khan, as the Bank's MD has power to sanction loans of Rs50 lakh only and for any loan above this, he is required to obtain approval from the Board.
 
7. For FY2013-14 and FY2014-15, the Bank's MD allegedly did not provide for gratuity and leave fare concessions in the balance sheet for showing cash profits, which was misleading to depositors of the Bank as well as regulators.
 
8. Recently, there was a case filed against Mr Khan, the Bank's MD at Pydhonie Police Station in Mumbai on alleged charges of fraud and cheating.
 
Our emails sent to both Mr Mehdi and Mr Khan remained unanswered till writing this story. We will incorporate their view, if any, as and when we receive it. We have also forwarded these findings to RBI but have not heard from the regulator either.
 

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COMMENTS

S.S.A.Zaidi

6 months ago

How can management be sitting quiet when such serious allegations are raised by Money -life is baffling to me. When such charges are allegedly made management should immediately spring up to rebut—But here nothing of such things happening—instead it seems sponsored motivated and tutored comments are posted obviously at the instance of---
In the light of such allegations management shud come out with a rebuttal else notify them Defamation suit will be filed,. as they feel defamed .The pace at which this is going on Management does not seem worried or bothered.Therefiore conclusion will be “””kuchch to hai jis ki perdadaree hai” i.e something is kept shrouded-How damaging it is to the reputation and operational efficiency of the Bank
Is this the quality of Leadership—it is “ we care less for you kind of attitude””

Nasir Ghayas

6 months ago

Deeply hurt to see these allegations, request for fair enquiry into this and if guilty, culprits to be punished so that our beloved institution can be saved.

Fareed Dhiyan

6 months ago

The news about Bombay Mercantile Co-operative Bank Ltd. in hot waters due to mismanagement by its top management is not new. It has been around for donkey's years. The question is what the regulators are doing to curb this. The current management team still comprises of people who have been under the shadow of these allegations in the past. Is the RBI and other governing bodies not aware of this.
I urge all concerned stake holders to come clean on this and have honest management committee constituted at the behest of the RBI.

GLN Prasad

6 months ago

Is there still a hope ? Can Court involve in these affairs ? I have my own doubts of such revival, as I have never heard HC/SC involvement. But if, once the rumor spreads and there may be a run on Bank, forcing appointment of a liquidator and it takes years for depositors to recover the money they have deposited, and no bank may be willing to take risk and burn their fingers, as each bank has it's own pack of problems already. Even the other bank desires for a hen that lays golden eggs and not a barren cow, that consumes food but can not yield a drop of milk and even the flesh may be unfit for consumption due to dreaded disease. Let us hope for the best, as Central Govt is coming for a powerful legislation and exploring taking possession of assets and auction it with less formalities.

TIHARwale

6 months ago

Cooperative banks are fit cases of financial mismanagement but RBI has never taken timely action. even in this case maximum what the stake holders can do is o email RBI and other relevant regulatory body regarding the corrupt activities carried out by the management, mails at least will leave evidence that RBI and regulatory authorities were notified but as per practice they have slept over the corruption in Bombay Mercantile Cooperative Bank

S.S.A.Zaidi

6 months ago

NO institution can survive on the basis of fear psychosis.I appeal to the people not to revel in the banks decline-Pleasure is in building an institution ---Take the bank as your family---think if this kind of chaos happens in your family -how will you react--would you
No organisation can survive on fear psychosis As a result it will wither away .How will one react if this happens in one’s family ,will the family be allowed to disintegrate--certainly not—efforts will be made to bring all to gather to ensure family remains united and work for the common family goal and achieve it successfully.
People in the bank should take the bank as a family and run it on family norms for the bank .Have a vision and mission statements done ,this will be the Bank common Goal TAKE EMPLOYEES INTO CONFIDENCE N MAKE A BEGINNING.I may mention here no employees and no trade union work to destroy the institution—they will not do it—their growth and prosperity is linked with the growth and prosperity of the bank---- now is the time to give back - build the bank –let it regain its glory pleasure is in building an institution –not destroying it
Don’t make inane comment - like--‘’-organisation mein aisa hota hai-merge ho jaye gaa to kya ho ga—“how shameful an preposterous statement it is.I am an individual i would not like to lose my identity—so why the bank built over a period of years shouid lose its identity


SHAHID M ZUBAIR

6 months ago

General belief hai ke Bombay Mercantile Bank’s corruption and irregularities ka ek small matter hai, lekin such is myth ke bilkul opposite hai. Actually yeh badi financial irregularities, corruption aur bank ke senior management, RBI aur Central Registrar aur bank employees ki unions ki criminal conspiracy of padora box hai. Bank ka present top management, jo bank me deposit public money se Central Registrar aur unki IAS assistant ko moti rishwate de kar dubara power me aya hai, maha corrupt, siddhant viheen, cheats and womanizer ka ek gang hai, jiski bamking knowledge zero hai. Moneylife ne inki harkato se parda utha kar bahut accha kam kiya hai, lekin yeh expose to bas ek tip of iceberg hai, kafi kuchh abhi bhi under the carpet hai.

Present management na sirf bank me mojud public money ko lootne me laga hai, but bank ki assets sell kar raha hai and purchases me commission kha raha hai.RBI aur Central Registrar-dono regulators inform kiye jane ke bad bhi chup hain. Loans par ban ka RBI ka decision bank ke innocent customers ko punishment hai. Share holders ko last 20 years se dividend nahi mila hai and employees ki salaries revise nahi hui hain. Employees dar ke saye me jee rahen hain aur unhe roz nai tensions diye ja rahen hain. Management ka apna koi revival program nahi hai, magar staff ko low cost deposit lane majboor kiya jar aha hai/ Mujhe doubt hai ke public ka yeh deposit khatre me hai. Agar aisa hua, to RBI apni responsibility se bach nahi sakta. Jis employees union ko staff ke issues uthane chahiye, unfortunately, regulators ki hi tarah, uske office bearers bhi management ki chaploosi me lage hain and management ke spokes persons ban gaye hain.

Lekin is sab ke beech ummed ki do kiran hain. Ek, banks irregularities par Supreme Court ka serious aur sakhat attitude and doosri, Moneylife jaise forums pe uthti awaz. Main sabhi sensitive aur responsible aur Bombay Mercantile Bank se hamdardi rakhne wale logon, specially Mr. S.S.A. Zaidi aur Mr. Zakir Inamdar jaise active logon se appeal karta hoon, ke Bombay Mercantile Bank ko lutne se bachane ke liye, ek aggressive campaign chalayen aur internet ke sath sath Electronic aur Print Media me bhi ye issues uthayen. RBI, Central Registrar, Finance Ministry and agar avashkta pade, to court ka dhyan bhi in issues par dilana chahiye, so that Bombay Mercantile Bank ko galat logo se chhutkara mile aur bank ko doobne se bachaya ja sake.

REPLY

Zakir Hussein Inamdar

In Reply to SHAHID M ZUBAIR 6 months ago

I appreciate your concern to this great institution, we are approaching all the authorities, if need be we will approach the court of law. your support is solicited.

S.S.A.Zaidi

In Reply to SHAHID M ZUBAIR 6 months ago

watch my articles in MoneY life n ET

GLN Prasad

6 months ago

Those who knows only Swamy and not credentials of Governor believes Swamy only. Unfortunately even media is not highlighting the extraordinary merit of Raghuram Rajan. But for PM's confidence, Governor is not having any God father, and every politician issues some statements against him as though he is responsible for every thing. One must distinguish between Macro level and micro level in functioning. Great injustice to Governor.

GLN Prasad

6 months ago

I have read a face book post To rob a bank you need a gun, but to rob public you need a bank. Appears true. But it is not proper to blame Governor of RBI for failures in individual bank management and particular co-op banks.

REPLY

S.S.A.Zaidi

In Reply to GLN Prasad 6 months ago

Raghuram rajan is the internationly reputed economist and central banker of global esteem Who Bothers about subramaniam swamy???

S.S.A.Zaidi

6 months ago

My comments on The BMC bank’s sorry state of affairs were not intended to offend people with past and present association with the bank.
These comments intended to spur them on to introspect why the bank once a shining star in the firmament of the urban coop banking has more or less lost its shine. A casual comment that it is in the process of being merged with some PS bank doesn't enthuse me personally and professionally, I would not like the bank to lose its identity. Let us not revel in its decline ,le us make efforts to see how It can be put on the path that takes it to its past glory.
I have already played my innings in domestic and international banking arena .I am now spending my time in reading and writing .My ’two books have already been published and received laudatory comments from bankers of international repute, I am working on my third book ,so I dont have any personal agenda to serve. Wherever I worked I did so with a sense of belonging. I sill take pride in being UNIONITE.


My comments on The BMC bank’s sorry state of affairs were not intended to offend people with past and present association with the bank.
These comments intended to spur them on to introspect why the bank once a shining star in the firmament of the urban coop banking has more or less lost its shine. A casual comment that it is in the process of being merged with some PS bank doesn't enthuse me personally and professionally, I would not like the bank to lose its identity. Let us not revel in its decline ,le us make efforts to see how It can be put on the path that takes it to its past glory.
I have already played my innings in domestic and international banking arena .I am now spending my time in reading and writing .My ’two books have already been published and received laudatory comments from bankers of international repute, I am working on my third book ,so I dont have any personal agenda to serve. Wherever I worked I did so with a sense of belonging. I sill take pride in being UNIONITE.
So I request my erstwhile colleague/s not to take offence but to introspect

S Santhanam

6 months ago

It is another sahara in making. As mentioned by some of the readers RBI has squarely failed to protect the interests of the depositors of the bank. In India it is a curse that co-op banks are controlled by politicians at state level and PSBs are by politicians at the centre. Maybe Subramanian swamy is right that as Governor of RBI Shri Rajan has done nothing to punish the fraudulent officials both atPSBs and coops and RBI itself. He is rather refusing to release the names of wilful defaulters. Sad but true

S Santhanam

6 months ago

It is another sahara in making. As mentioned by some of the readers RBI has squarely failed to protect the interests of the depositors of the bank. In India it is a curse that co-op banks are controlled by politicians at state level and PSBs are by politicians at the centre. Maybe Subramanian swamy is right that as Governor of RBI Shri Rajan has done nothing to punish the fraudulent officials both atPSBs and coops and RBI itself. He is rather refusing to release the names of wilful defaulters. Sad but true

S Santhanam

6 months ago

It is another sahara in making. As mentioned by some of the readers RBI has squarely failed to protect the interests of the depositors of the bank. In India it is a curse that co-op banks are controlled by politicians at state level and PSBs are by politicians at the centre. Maybe Subramanian swamy is right that as Governor of RBI Shri Rajan has done nothing to punish the fraudulent officials both atPSBs and coops and RBI itself. He is rather refusing to release the names of wilful defaulters. Sad but true

S Santhanam

6 months ago

It is another sahara in making. As mentioned by some of the readers RBI has squarely failed to protect the interests of the depositors of the bank. In India it is a curse that co-op banks are controlled by politicians at state level and PSBs are by politicians at the centre. Maybe Subramanian swamy is right that as Governor of RBI Shri Rajan has done nothing to punish the fraudulent officials both atPSBs and coops and RBI itself. He is rather refusing to release the names of wilful defaulters. Sad but true

S Santhanam

6 months ago

It is another sahara in making. As mentioned by some of the readers RBI has squarely failed to protect the interests of the depositors of the bank. In India it is a curse that co-op banks are controlled by politicians at state level and PSBs are by politicians at the centre. Maybe Subramanian swamy is right that as Governor of RBI Shri Rajan has done nothing to punish the fraudulent officials both atPSBs and coops and RBI itself. He is rather refusing to release the names of wilful defaulters. Sad but true

Is TRAI's half-baked DND Services mobile app, an example of Digital India?

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has launched a mobile application (app) to help subscribers file complaints against unsolicited commercial communications or telemarketing calls and messages. The app is called as DND Services and available on Google App Store. The idea is good, but what came out as the end result is a typical sarkari thing and fails to work as promised. The question is when there are several good apps doing the same job, why was TRAI hell bent on re-inventing the wheel and that too without adequate trials and checks?

As per Google Play Store data and statistics, DND Services is evaluated and rated (on the scale of one to five stars, higher the better) by 38 users till writing this story. However, what it fails to mention is the total number of downloads, as is common with any other app on Google Play Store. 

 

In fact, the description page of DND Services app shows zero downloads! The same page also has a wrong email ID of the developer. 

Another issue with the DND Services is, it does not recognise dual SIMs in a phone and works assuming the primary SIM as the only SIM. Therefore, in case the user wants to file complaint against UCC received on secondary SIM, she would not be able to do so.

 

 
In addition, some users who have tried DND Services app complain about errors while sending complaints. Especially, TRAI or its Do Not Call (DNC) service requires the subscriber to send complaint in a typical format. The mobile app from TRAI is supposed to be able to do it with ease. But that is not the case. Some users say they have received messages pointing out error in message sending format. 
 
The efforts of TRAI to launch a mobile app for reporting spam or marketing calls and messages is laudable. However, when your launch such apps for mass subscribers, it require adequate field testing. Especially, since this app is being launched by the telecom regulator, and thus carries a weight, should not have launched in half-baked version. May be someone at the TRAI or the Telecom Ministry just want to impress their bosses and have launched the DND Services app without any thorough testing. But such half-baked efforts, especially from the regulator, make people vary about trying out new and useful apps.
 
Talking about alternates for the DND Services app, there are several mobile apps available on Google Play Store. One of the highly rated (4.6 * out of 5) is ‘India Against Spam’. It is very simple to use and does the job as promised. 
 
However, all such ‘do not disturb’ and ‘file complaint’ mobile apps will not help you from receiving such messages. The reason is simple, the spammers use a new mobile number every time to send spam messages. However, there is a hope. Some apps like TrueCaller or Truemessenger that work on collective feedback from users. On certain mobile handsets, TrueCaller even blocks (automatically) numbers that are marked as spam by several fellow users. However, both these apps need access to your contact information, which some of us may not like. But then this is a small compromise compared with what we can get in return instead of a sarkari app that is full of glitches.
 

User

COMMENTS

Aditya G

6 months ago

TRAI's DND is a hopeless joke! I still get crank/spam calls.

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