‘Heat on Munde-led bank shows govt’s intent to act tough on cash stashers’

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NEW DELHI: The CBI action against a cooperative bank, controlled by BJP’s ‘Munde family’ in Maharashtra, has sent a strong message about PM Narendra Modi‘s insistence that no violator would be spared in the government’s efforts to cleanse the economy post demonetisation, party members say.

Sources said the PM and BJP chief Amit Shah have been personally monitoring compliance of their instructions to BJP lawmakers to maintain transparency about their transactions after November 8. Sources said the PMO cell, set up for calls against illicit monetary transactions and currency conversions, has helped agencies arrest a large number of violators since Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes were scrapped.

The CBI registered a case on Friday against two officials of a bank controlled by BJP MP Pritam Munde and some others, following recovery of Rs10 crore in demonetised notes last week. The agency carried out searches at 11 places at Beed, Aurangabad, Pune and Mumbai. However, nobody has been arrested so far.

On December 15, police had recovered Rs 10.10 crore, including Rs10 lakh in new Rs 2,000 notes, from a car in Maharashtra. It turned out that Rs 10 crore of this was part of the Rs 25 crore in demonetised notes that the officials of Vaidyanath Urban Co-op Bank Ltd were transporting. Pritam Munde is director of the bank .
Action against the Munde family followed raids by the I-T department last week at eight premises of BJP member and former chairman of Madhya Pradesh Rajya Sahakari Awas Sangh, Sushil Vaswani, unearthing unaccounted cash in crores — in both old and new currency. Income-tax officials had found discrepancies in transactions through Mahanagar Nagrik Sehkari Bank at Bairagarh, where Vaswani is a director and founder-member.

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A senior party leader said action against the two ruling party lawmakers testifies that Modi and Shah mean business and that days of immunity for ruling party leaders are over.
“There should not be any exceptions while enforcing law of the land. Unlike Congress, our party believes in setting example for others as we can’t expect from people what we can’t do,” he said.