Karuvannur bank scam: Rs 38 cr returned; actions taken to prevent frauds in cooperatives, says min

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VN Vasavan

Kottayam: The Karuvannur Service Cooperative has returned Rs 38.75 crore to the depositors so far, said Minister for Cooperation, VN Vasavan.

The bank witnessed misappropriations worth Rs 104 cr as proven in the investigation. Philomena, who died recently after making failed attempts to win back her lost money in the bank for her treatment, was given Rs 4.60 lakh, said the minister. Philomena had deposited Rs 30 lakh.

The bank could not give money when they were approached on June 28. Upon the complaint of inhuman treatment of the employees towards her family, the additional registrar of cooperatives is entrusted with conducting an investigation. Strong action will be taken based on the report, said the minister.

An overdraft of Rs 25 cr and a risk fund of Rs 10 cr will be immediately given to the bank. The functioning of the Karuvannur bank has returned to normalcy, claimed the minister.

Vasavan said there is an organised campaign to malign the cooperatives of the state.

The audit directorate has been reconstituted. A comprehensive amendment to the laws for improving the functioning of the cooperatives will be introduced in the next session of the assembly, said the minister.

He also said that the news regarding 164 cooperative institutions incurring a loss is misleading. Only 132 miscellaneous cooperative societies are facing issues. Most of them are not banks. There are only a few service cooperative banks in Kerala, said the minister.

It has been a year since the fraudulent dealings in the Karuvannur bank has come to light. The crime branch which probes the case is yet to submit the chargesheet.

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