Mumbai: The finance ministry is working with the Prime Minister’s Office to resolve the Rs11,400 crore scam at Punjab National Bank (PNB) and the government will try to extradite and punish Nirav Modi—alleged to be behind the fraud—minister of state for finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said on Saturday.
The state-owned PNB has detected a $1.77 billion (about Rs11,400 crore) scam where billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi allegedly acquired fraudulent letters of undertaking (LoUs) from the Brady House branch of the bank in Mumbai to secure overseas credit from other lenders.
“The finance ministry is in discussions with the Prime Ministers office and whatever the PMO decides, the finance ministry will implement," Shukla told reporters at an Assocham event in Mumbai. He said the investigation into the PNB fraud is still on, and the government will not spare any guilty person.
“We will try to extradite Nirav Modi and punish him for the fraud he has done," Shukla said. When asked about Modi being part of the business delegation which attended Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s events at the World Economic Forum in Davos last month, Shukla said: “He (Nirav Modi) did not accompany the Prime Minister. Various people were called there and so he was also present."
He also said that Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has categorically stated that if the fault is from the PNB side, then the lender will have to repay all the banks who have borne the brunt of the fraud. There were media reports that the RBI has directed PNB to meet its commitments under the LoUs to all other banks. However, in a statement issued on Friday the central bank denied having given any such instructions.