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PNB fraud: Ex-deputy bank manager Shetty, two other key accused arrested

NEW DELHI: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has arrested Gokulnath Shetty, the then deputy Manager (now Retd) of the Punjab National Bank in connection with the Rs 11,400 crore fraud conducted at the Mumbai branch of the national bank. Along with Shetty, Manoj Kharat, the single window operator (SWO) and Hemant Bhat, the Authorised Signatory of the Nirav Modi Group of Firms, have also been arrested.
The three will be produced before the CBI special court in Mumbai later on Saturday. It had emerged that the fraudulently issued Letters of Undertaking (LoUs) from the Mumbai branch of PNB were issued in favour of Hong Kong branches of Allahabad Bank and Axis Bank. These letters helped facilitate Rs 280.7 crore fraud by jewellery designer Nirav Modi among others.
As per the FIR lodged with the CBI, Shetty and Kharat had transmitted SWIFT instructions to the above-mentioned banks for raising buyers credit and for funding the Nostro accounts of PNB, without due procedure. The LoUs were issued on behalf of Diamond R US, Solar Exports, Stellar Diamonds.
Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate has been raiding the premises of Nirav Modi across the country. A case under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against him and other accused has been registered. Nirav Modi is currently believed to be in a hotel in New York.