PNB closed all options to recover dues by going public: Nirav Modi

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 21 Feb 2018 10:24:47


 

MUMBAI,

THROWING up his hands, beleaguered businessman Nirav Modi, the alleged kingpin of the largest banking scam in the country’s history, has said PNB’s overzealousness shut the doors on his ability to clear the dues.
He also said the dues were much less than what the bank has claimed, and that his relatives booked in the cases filed by the central agencies had nothing to do with the operations of the firms under their scanner.


In a letter Modi wrote on February 15/16 to the Punjab National Bank management, a copy of which PTI has seen, he pegged the money his companies owe to the bank under Rs 5,000 crore.


“The erroneously cited liability resulted in a media frenzy which led to immediate search and seizure of operations, and which in turn resulted in Firestar International and Firestar Diamond International effectively ceasing to be going-concerns. “This thereby jeopardised our ability to discharge the dues of the group to the banks,” Modi, who left the country along with his family in the first week of January, before the alleged scam became public, wrote in the letter. “In the anxiety to recover your dues immediately, despite my offer (on February 13, a day before the public announcement, and on 15) your actions have destroyed my brand and the business and have now restricted your ability to recover all the dues leaving a trail of unpaid debts,”he said.


The letter also refers to the extended discussions between him, and between his representatives and the bank officers, besides his emails of February 13 and 15, 2018. The PNB, the second largest state-run bank, had, on February 14, informed the exchanges about detecting USD 1.77 billion fraud at its Brady House branch in Mumbai, and named the firms led by Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi’s Gitanjali Group, and some other diamond and jewellery merchants as suspects. Central Government agencies the CBI and the Enforcement Directorat have registered cases on the complaint by the bank, and launched nationwide searches on dozens of offices and residences of the alleged fraudsters.