While RBI Acts Strict about Giving New Banking Licence, How Was a Director of HDIL Group Controlling PMC Bank?
The main reason why the Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank is in deep trouble is because the bankrupt Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd (HDIL) (tottering Dewan Housing Finance Ltd-DHFL is also of the same promoter group) had a finger in the Bank. It was not a case of one bad lending.
 
There was a close nexus between the HDIL group and the Bank through Waryam Singh, the chairman of PMC Bank. He was director of several companies associated with HDIL group and the Wadhwans.
 
PMC Bank’s managing director (MD) has been on television providing false platitudes and feigning ignorance of the loot of depositors’ money and also claiming that Mr Singh had resigned from the HDIL group in 2015. The very fact that the Bank is over-extended to this group is proof that the nexus is as strong as ever. 
 
The government and the regulator are doing a great disservice to depositors by permitting the MD to put out half-truths. Ideally, we need answers from the government. Also, like in the case of Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS), we need to change management, sack those who were responsible and act fast to salvage public funds. 
 
The failure of PMC Bank is already beginning to impact even the better-run cooperative banks that are seeing worried depositors wanting to ring-fence at least a part of their funds. If the situation is allowed to fester, things can get worse. 
 
It is surprising that while the banking regulator, Reserve Bank of India (RBI), acts extremely tough about giving new bank licences, it was either completely oblivious or knew, but did nothing about this nexus. The result of this regulatory failure today is that tens of thousands of depositors are on the streets worried about their money. 
 
Following the death of Charanjit Singh Chadha on 12 January 2015, PMC Bank board elected Waryam Singh as new chairman for five years till 2020.  
 
Mr Singh, in 2009, was listed among individuals forming part of the promoter group of HDIL group in an information memorandum for issue of privately placed debentures. Even if he resigned in 2015, it is clear that the deep relationship with HDIL and its many group companies persisted.  
 
Here is what is available in the public domain.
 
Waryam Singh’s association with the Wadhwans dates back to 17 January 1997, when he was made director of DHFL Property Services Ltd from where he resigned on 27 March 2009. Before resigning in March-April 2015, Mr Singh had served as director of HDIL for almost nine years. Data from Zaubacorp.com shows Mr Singh has served as director of several HDIL group companies for several years.
 
 
 
In Blue Star Realtors Pvt Ltd, Mr Singh was allocated just one share. However, this single share establishes closeness of the relationship between him and the HDIL group. 
 
 
Mr Singh was a director of Ravijyot Finance & Leasing, another group company associated with the Wadhwans. 
 
 
Mr Singh, who is the chairman of PMC Bank, was shown as promoter of Broadcast Initiatives Ltd (erstwhile Sri Adhikari Brothers News & Television Network Ltd) in the company’s draft letter of offer in March 2011. The other promoters in Broadcast Initiatives were: Rakesh Kumar Wadhwan, Sarang Wadhwan, Ashok Kumar Gupta and HDIL Infra Projects Pvt Ltd. 
 
 
In Guruashish Constructions Pvt Ltd, Mr Singh was representing HDIL group along with Rakesh Kumar Wadhwan. 
 
 
As per data from Zaubacorp, Waryam Singh has been shown as director of 18 companies, many of them related with the Wadhwans. (see image below)
 
(Source: Zaubacorp.com)
 
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Comments
Ranbir Lamba
2 years ago
Ranjit Pandey
See law Makers have passed laws in their favour ( Anarchists). They forget it can bounce back on them. Public is so docile no one challenges till dark days come .
A) Abdulah father made law Public Safety Act (PSA). Anyone can be taken under PSA ( not defined PSA) for 3 years . Now see His son Abbdullah 3 times CM is under house arrest & can't even challenge
B) Custodial interrogation . A British era rule . No gravity if offence defined for custodial interrogation . Now see PC cooling heels in Tihar & eating same food + floor . Pawar + Vadra + Maya + Akihlesh extra may join bandwagon
C) Banking laws . It is a trade off between customers & banks . No other third party is signatory for FD extra. Then how can your money be controlled by RBI. Insurance why of only one lakh . Your full Money should be ensured & RBI/ Government has to ensure security & safety of your funds as Specified in role of RBI and RBI is agent of government.
Then how can your money be wiped off
Because no one has challenged so far & noone has filed FIR/PIL.

Right to property is your fundamental right & government cannot enact any act violation to it.
It is not will of government to pass any draconian law as per wish.
It is duty of opposition + constitutional authorities + public that Fundamental laws are not violated
Govinda Warrier
Replied to Ranbir Lamba comment 2 years ago
My understanding of evolution of law is limited and therefore am not able to immediately connect (A+B) with C. Still I agree with the point made that there's no justification in punishing depositors, the way it has happened in the case of PMC Bank from the day RBI directions have been enforced.
B. Yerram Raju
2 years ago
Highly informative and investigative article. Hope the regulators read this for correction, accept their lax supervision and also pay the penalty for it and not push it to the multitude of depositors.
Kurien Mathew
2 years ago
There should be a change in the law regarding the insurance in the deposits kept at the bank, an equal amount of insurance for the deposited money should be there and not one lakh of rupees which was an old law, it is high time to change this.
DrRajesh Bheda
Replied to Kurien Mathew comment 2 years ago
yes absolutely
DrRajesh Bheda
2 years ago
should study the BS of DICGC as stated by you they have paid only for failure of coop banks and no other public or private bank. Every penny of deposit in the country is insured by them. A person may have any amt as deposit bank pays insurance for full amt. but only 1 lakh per person is insured. where is justice in this?. DICGC must be making huge profits unless of course they too are siphoning of money.
Kurien Mathew
2 years ago
Day by day people are losing trust with the authorities at large, RBI could have controlled earlier by taking punitive actions at the right stage when the liabilities were increasing year on year though the net profits of PMC were apparently fair, now the hard-earned money of the depositors are being blocked, customers keep them on deposits seeing the liquidity in nature as on emergency and other needs deposited money is at their disposal.
The annual audited statement of accounts gives a true picture and the regularities of filing the papers as per statutory norms might have been done, if so no restrictions even after the alarming bell raised is definitely a failure of the concerned authority.
TIHARwale
2 years ago
it is common knowledge RBI inspection is a farce. Inspectors are more bothered about lunch, gift and outings organised by Bank branches inspection work is least priority. Asregardsaudit by CA firms they cannot red flag in the case of accounts as their next assignment is dependent upon keeping in good humour the bank which has power to extend assignment to CA or bring in pliable CA for audit
Govinda Warrier
Replied to TIHARwale comment 2 years ago
Any suggestions to change or improve the situation? Who should replace RBI, CAs, banks and government?
Gopalakrishnan T V
Replied to Govinda Warrier comment 2 years ago
It is high time to replace Cooperative banks in urban and metropolitan centres with commercial banks. Cooperative banks can be in rural areas under the Supervision of NABARD. Politicians should keep themselves away from all financial institutions including the Reserve Bank. The risk based supervisory system pursued by the Reserve Bank has only added to the risks of mismanagement and lost the real focus in sum and substance on the credit portfolio of banks. RBI should be made more accountable for its lapses on regulation and supervision. The selection of directors on banks boards ignoring completely the fit and proper criteria should undergo drastic change.
Govinda Warrier
Replied to Gopalakrishnan T V comment 2 years ago
Thanks. Today, I've sent a revised response to two financial newspapers. Copied below:



M G Warrier

Letters

September 26, 2019

Banking crisis

This refers to your editorial “Co-operative crisis ” (September 26). This time around, one is afraid, the inept handling of PMC Bank mess may have an impact on the trust people had in the Indian Banking System since 1960’s. With the nationalization of major commercial banks (1969) and extension of coverage of the Banking Regulation Act to cooperatives (1966), common man believed that someone is in control of the banks in India and his savings deposited in banks were safe.

Obviously, the action initiated by RBI imposing restrictions in the functioning of the PMC Bank is with good intentions and aimed at protecting the interests of bank’s depositors. One objective of imposing a ceiling on withdrawal from deposit account with the bank is to guard against panic withdrawals which may cause a run on the bank. Fair enough. The ceiling of Rs1000 during the coming 6 months, possibly the result of a ‘cut and paste’ approach to drafting directions needs immediate review More transparency in such measures is needed, as today, the public trust in the financial system is not very high. The inadvertent efforts to destabilize the institutional system including the limbs responsible for regulation and supervision have also contributed to the present unenviable situation. The laws applicable to primary (urban) cooperative banks with multi-state presence and large clientele need immediate overhaul. “Cooperatives” remaining a state subject should not come in the way of regulating cooperative banks under the provisions of B R Act.

A related issue is, for the savers, the statutory provisions stipulating capital and reserves requirements including maintenance of liquid assets and the existence of deposit insurance (with a ridiculously low limit of Rs one lakh per account, though) are not found helpful in such situations. In this context, just as RBI has got its Economic Capital Framework (ECF) studied by an expert group chaired by former RBI governor Dr Bimal Jalan, GOI and RBI may consider appointing a panel of experts to study the capital and reserves framework of all banks including cooperative banks. The expert panel may also make suggestions on maintaining a national deposits protection fund under the aegis of DICGC to provide immediate relief to depositors in situations like this. A wholesale review covering adequacy of capital, liquid assets and reserves and realignment of their components may prove beneficial to the economy, as the exercise may release liquidity into the market.

M G Warrier, Mumbai
Ranbir Lamba
Replied to Govinda Warrier comment 2 years ago
Clear cut case of dereliction of duties
Punish Managers + admin + board + RBI + FM official
B. Yerram Raju
Replied to Ranbir Lamba comment 2 years ago
I fully agree. Move the window of punishment from depositors to Directors and RBI. Regulator is obviously winking at the happening for quite some time. All the RBI inspection reports must be reviewed.
AAR
2 years ago
To me punishing depositors for mismanagement is not fair. RBI should immediately remove withdrawal restrictions.
Ranbir Lamba
Replied to AAR comment 2 years ago
Punish official for dereliction of duties
Gopalakrishnan T V
2 years ago
Though the Reserve Bank's present action seems to be justifiable to prevent further damage the fact remains that depositors are taken for a ride by the bank's failure all these years and RBI's inefficiencies to take timely action in rectifying the irregularities with proper regulation and supervision. Dual control on co-operative banks is often cited as the main reason for co-operative banks failures but what are the checks and balances have been kept in place to prevent erosion of depositors money is a major question. How the Director of HDI L with poor track record as spelt out in the article could take over as the Chairman of this co-op bank needs an explanation from the authorities and banks own board of directors. The auditors of the bank should also be pulled up for their incompetence or for their involvement in covering up the deficiencies in banks accounting and working. All said depositors cannot be made to suffer in the hands of poor MANAGEMENTS of co-op banks, inefficient regulators and supervisors and others directly or indirectly involved in managing the co-op banks. They need justice and they cannot be allowed to suffer for poor governance standards.
Govinda Warrier
Replied to Gopalakrishnan T V comment 2 years ago
Absolutely right. There has to be conscious efforts to find solutions and avoid recurrence of such chaotic handling of such sensitive situations. When criminals get protection, savers (include workers, retirees, housewives and self-employed persons) who have deposited money in a fairly large bank suffer. The name PMC Bank doesn't reveal it's an urban cooperative bank. The claim that the bank is "Scheduled" give it more credibility. If in a crisis like this, no help will come from having a deposit insurance scheme, a Banking Regulation Act and a Registrar of Cooperative Societies, how common man will trust the government and the banking system? Less said, the better, about media role. Print media is hesitant to publish even responses like this.
Govinda Warrier
2 years ago
Facts and figures here are self-revealing.
Obviously, the action initiated by RBI is with good intentions and aimed at protecting the interests of bank depositors including the PMC Bank clientele. One objective of imposing a ceiling on withdrawal from deposit account with the bank is to guard against panic withdrawals which may cause a run on the bank. Fair enough.
More transparency in such measures is needed, as today, the public trust in the financial system is not very high. The inadvertent efforts to destabilize the institutional system including those responsible for regulation and supervision have also contributed to the present unenviable situation.

Considering the multi-state presence and large clientele with a deposit base of over Rs11,000 crore, RBI need to quickly review the withdrawal limit of Rs1000 fixed for 6 months in the case of PMC Bank. More important, the message that the present action is in the interest of the stakeholders, including depositors, of the bank has to be publicized.

A related issue is, for the savers, the statutory provisions stipulating capital and reserves requirements including maintenance of liquid assets are not found helpful in such situations. In this context, just as RBI has got its Economic Capital Framework (ECF) studied by an expert group chaired by former RBI governor Dr Bimal Jalan, GOI and RBI may consider appointing a panel of experts to study the capital and reserves framework of all banks including cooperative banks. The expert panel may also make suggestions on maintaining a national deposits protection fund under the aegis of DICGC to provide immediate relief to depositors in situations like this. A wholesale review covering adequacy of capital, liquid assets and reserves and realignment of their components may prove beneficial to the economy, as the exercise may release liquidity into the market.

M G Warrier, Mumbai
Ranbir Lamba
Replied to Govinda Warrier comment 2 years ago
Don't you think RBI failed in its basic duty as per their role
Don't you think bankers & admin have failure in their duty
Huge loss NPA who is going to infuse .
No one
customers & bank kyc norms is contract & trust
Why bankers have broken trust
Mohan Krishnan
2 years ago
Depositors can file a criminal case against RBI if above mentioned wilful negligence are true.
Ranbir Lamba
Replied to Mohan Krishnan comment 2 years ago
PIL can help
Ranbir Lamba
2 years ago
https://www.facebook.com/143902715620459/posts/2719865724690799/?sfnsn=scwspmo


PMC
It is a cooperative bank by the people for the people of the people.

Money in saving & FD is their hard earned money.

Depositors never create NPA. The NPA is created by bankers & administrator of banks .
Then how can customers can be harassed .
It is main role of RBI

Regulator and supervisor of the financial system: lays out parameters of banking operations within which the country”s banking and financial system functions for-
A) maintaining public confidence in the system, B) protecting depositors’ interest ;
C) providing cost-effective banking services to the general public.

Regulator and supervisor of the payment systems:
A) Authorises setting up of payment systems;
B) Lays down standards for working of the payment system;
C)lays down policies for encouraging the movement from paper-based payment systems to electronic modes of payments.
D) Setting up of the regulatory framework of newer payment methods. E) Enhancement of customer convenience in payment systems.
F) Improving security and efficiency in modes of payment.

Points to ponder

1)The customers in no way connected to RBI
2) The contract for saving account & FD extra is with bank & customers.
RBI is not a part of contract
3) Then how can third party( RBI) enter into privacy & functioning
4)The NPA is not created by customers. It is by
Bankers + Administrator + Regulator due to Dereliction of duties.
5) Thus as per law of land no loss can be born by customers . If rules or laws have been made favouring bankers & regulators then it amounts to Illegal monetary monopoly practices
6)Finally RBI is bankers if bankers & Agent of government then
No restrictions can be laid on customers money . Loss if any due to Dereliction if duties then bankers + administrator should be held responsible & Finally if government agent RBI has failed then it is duty of Government to reimburse money to customers & recover from defaulters A) maintaining public confidence in the system, B) protecting depositors’ interest ;
C) providing cost-effective banking services to the general public.
1) maintaining public confidence in the system, 2) protecting depositors’ interest ;
3) providing cost-effective banking services to the general public.
Jugnu Manhas
Replied to Ranbir Lamba comment 2 years ago
Pls let me know if any group of depositors is signing collective PIL, I would like to join it. A Bank that was declared healthy by Auditors in Mar 2019 cannot suddenly go so wrong. I trust and believe in the Legacy of Sardar Charanjit Singh Chaddha jee and Mr Joy Thomas as they passionately made a good bank . Apart from my money I want to fight for the respectability of the bank, which should not get tarnished due to a fraudulent member in the team.
Ranbir Lamba
Replied to Jugnu Manhas comment 2 years ago
I will help in case you need help anytime. Members should lodge combined PIL so that court gives justice to all in one go & reduce multiple litigation for speedy & timely justice
Jugnu Manhas
Replied to Ranbir Lamba comment 2 years ago
I do feel that there is more to it than appear to the eye - and I still have trust in Joy Thomas, PMC Bank. However - I would like to have access to my savings. I fail to understand why a Secured Loan to an Individual Entity is being challenged ( his affiliation to a loss making venture is a separate Entity). If the transactions are disputed why are the Personal Bank Guarantees not being encashed? How is it possible for a Bank to be running profitably as per Financial Year disclosure report and 6 months later be going bust? If wrong doings were detected was not a warning issued/ moratorium period to rectify given - how can a declaration be made in evening to freeze all operations the next morning? PMC is an extremely well run bank for the last few years - why has the image been sullied?
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