VARANASI: With bank frauds being reported from across the country in recent days, a new kind of fraud was unearthed recently in Balia district of Uttar Pradesh.
This man came up with a rather unique means of embezzling funds — he opened a fake branch of the Karnataka Bankin Mulayam Nagar of Fefna area in Ballia district. He was arrested on Wednesday by the police.
The arrested person — Aafaq Ahmed — from Badaun, who was operating this branch as the manager, went by the name Vinod Kumar Kambali, perhaps inspired by cricketer Vinod Kambli. Ahmed possessed a fake Aadhaar and other identities in the same name. His id said he was from Mumbai West.
Cops said Ahmed collected a total of Rs 1.37 lakh by opening 15 saving accounts and fixed deposits of the locals . A huge stash of stationery – including forms, pass books, three computers, laptop, furniture and other articles – was also seized by the police.
The police, acting upon a complaint from the additional general manager of the branch in Delhi, conducted raids on the Ballia branch. CO City Hitendra Krishnasaid BBH Upadhyaya, who is additional general manager (AGM) of the Bank of Karnataka in Delhi, along with his subordinates from the Varanasi office, reached Ballia in the afternoon and informed the cops about the operation of a fake branch of this bank here.
Following this, Krishna, along with the bank officials and a heavy police force visited the ‘fake bank’ which was being run from the house of an ex-army man in Mulayam Nagar. According to reports, the house was rented for Rs 32,000 per month.
When police reached the branch, Ahmed was sitting inside his chamber while five other employees were found working on computers at different tables. In the presence of the police, Upadhyaya sought Ahmed’s appointment letter, RBI license and authorization documents of the bank’s headquarters. When he failed to produce the required documentation, the cops arrested him.
Other employees, who were locals and employed for a payment of Rs 5000 each, were spared after it was determined they had no knowledge of the scam. Their statements were recorded.
When police started checking the documents and belongings of Ahmed it came to light that he had opened this branch a month ago. According to reports, he had not paid rent to the house owner. The payment against purchase of furniture had also not been made by him.
Krishna said an FIR was lodged under sections 419, 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the IPC and Ahmed had been arrested.
Bank officials opened 15 fake accounts
The police learnt that 15 savings accounts were opened at the branch. A minimum balance of Rs 1000 was required to open an account. In addition, locals were also duped into opening fixed deposits, ranging from Rs 30,000 to Rs 70,000.