New Delhi: As the protests over the Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank case intensifies across the country, the Supreme Court on Friday will hear public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Bijon Mishra with regards to the case.
The development comes after the apex court on October 15 agreed to give an urgent hearing to the PIL filed in regards to the case. While filing the petition in the top court, Mishra had sought the full protection of over 15 lakh victims and 100 per cent insurance cover for PMC depositors. The matter was heard by the bench headed by Justice N V Ramana.
The plea comes at a time when the protests over the matter witnessed three deaths in three days time. Sanjay Gulati and Fattomal Punjabi suffered a heart attack, while 39-year-old Dr Nivedita Bijlani committed suicide.
Earlier in the day, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in a press conference urged the Maharashtra Chief Minister, Prime Minister and Finance Minister to look into the PMC Bank case and said these leaders should resolve the grievances of the 15 lakh people. “It’s very unfortunate what has happened in the case of this bank,” Manmohan Singh said in a meeting in Mumbai.
He was quoted by news agency ANI as saying, “I expect the govt of India, RBI and the govt of Maharashtra to put their head together and provide a credible, pragmatic and effective solution to this case where 16 Lakh depositors are trying for justice.”
Prior to this, a delegation of 15 depositors of PMC Bank was prepared to meet the former Prime Minister to discuss their grievances and request his intervention in the matter. A day before that the administrator of PMC Bank and members of the advisory committee had assured the RBI governor that efforts would be taken to safeguard the interests of the PMC bank depositors and stakeholders.
In another development, the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police on October 16 arrested former director of PMC Bank Surinder Arora in connection with the case.
Prior to this, he was interrogated by the EOW in connection with the bank scam. The city’s Joint Commissioner of Police (EOW) Rajvardhan Sinha had earlier in the day informed that Arora was being questioned in the matter.
The development comes as panic gripped the account holders of the PMC Bank due to the uncertainties over their deposits, which have been stuck after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had last month put a restriction on the lender for six months owing to a massive understatement of NPAs. After the irregularities in the bank surface, the RBI restricted the activities of the bank for six months and asked it to not grant or renew any loans and advances.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED), on the other hand, has also seized movable and immovable assets worth more than Rs 3,830 crore owned by Housing Development and Infrastructure Limited (HDIL) in connection with the case.
Established in 1984 in Mumbai, the PMC Bank has a network of 137 branches in Delhi and six states including Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. Besides, PMC bank is one of the top 10 cooperative banks in India.