August 2 2019
The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU-Ind) has imposed a penalty of Rs 15.62 crore on state-owned Punjab National Bank (PNB) for breaching anti-money laundering rules. The FIU move against PNB is significant because it is based on inspection and review of the Bank during April 2016-November 2017, which covers the crucial months before and after demonetisation that was announced on 8 November 2016 by the government to neutralize black money.
The FIU which is primarily responsible for safeguarding the financial system from the abuses of money laundering, terrorism financing and other economic offences said the PNB not only failed to submit threshold-based transaction reports but also did not file suspicious transaction reports accurately. The central agency is also of the view that PNB was found wanting in evolving and implementing an effective internal mechanism for suspicious transactions and submitting the correct data to FIU for further analysis and probe. Interestingly, just two months after the FIU review, PNB was hit by the Nirav Modi scam.