Hyderabad, Oct. 9: They could not have found a better name to inspire trust, but the corruption in spelling spilled over into their deeds, too.
An urban cooperative bank named after Mother Teresa — the Mother Theresa Cooperative Urban Bank — is in the news for issuing bogus bank guarantees to the tune of Rs 3.5 crore.
Andhra Pradesh police today arrested the bank’s chairman, T. Charles, managing director Christopher and Aparna, Charles’ wife, for fraud and cheating. Aparna was functioning as an acting chairperson of the bank though she was not even a director.
Their procedure of issuing dud guarantees came to light when Kusuma Rao, a senior official of the bank, was caught red-handed after one such guarantee note issued to UTI for a software company returned for lack of proper signatures. Bank guarantees are assurances given by a bank to repay a loan on behalf of any individual or company if the latter is unable to repay the debt.
The arrest blew the lid off the slick operation that the officials had been carrying on. The case, which is being probed by a police team from the Central Crime Station, involves deposits of over Rs 4 crore by nearly 400 members.
The fixed deposits, which had come up for repayment, amounted to Rs 65 lakh. Scores of depositors mobbed the bank premises. Charles, who had evaded arrest till yesterday, surrendered to the police this morning. He had offered to bring cash from Bangalore to repay the depositors but failed to bring any.
The bank is the 17th urban cooperative bank in Hyderabad to wind up during the last two years. “Over half of them have declared bankruptcy due to mismanagement and, in a few of them the top management has fled from the country. The case of the Krushi Bank chairman, who is absconding till date, is an example,” said advocate S. Ramachandra Rao, who has been fighting the case for the bank depositors.