Over the past few weeks, the income-tax department has made seizures of new currency notes worth lakhs in several raids across the country even as ATMs continue to remain out of cash and bank withdrawals are still capped at Rs 24,000 a week. While investigating agencies are yet to identify the exact points of such cash leakages, ET looks at potential points from where cash could have slipped out…
1. Leakage Likely When Cash is in Transit
FROM RBI to currency chest
FROM CURRENCY chest to branches
FROM CURRENCY chest to offsite ATMs
ILLEGAL EXCHANGE of cash at any of these points
EMPLOYEES OF cash logistics companies could be involved
PRESSED FOR time, cash transportation job given to private firms without running proper background checks
2. Loss of Cash at Branches
NOTE EXCHANGE: Lack of clarity allowed people to exchange Rs 4,000 at bank counters of multiple branches of different banks.
BENAMI ACCOUNTS: Unscrupulous elements deposited unaccounted cash in such accounts and then withdrew cash, converting black money into white.
DORMANT ACCOUNTS: Bankers, in few cases, connived with money hoarders to use dormant accounts for money laundering.
3. Jan Dhan Accounts
Such accounts of poor uneducated farmers and labourers were used by hoarders to deposit Rs 49,999 without PAN card and then withdraw Rs 24,000 in two instalments over 2 weeks.
It is estimated that Rs 27,000 crore was deposited post scrapping of old notes.
Lack of clarity regarding formalities required for withdrawing cash for weddings gave scope to moneylaunderers to issue false wedding invitation cards and undertakings to withdraw Rs 2.5 lakh after depositing their black money into banks.
5. Current Accounts
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Small businessmen who may not have really needed Rs 50,000 (limit for these accounts) may have withdrawn large sums on a weekly basis as a conduit for those having unaccounted money.