STATE TIMES NEWS SRINAGAR: Special Judge Anticorruption Kashmir R.N Wattal on Saturday rejected bail application of Hilal Ahmad Mir, son of Sonaullah Mir, resident of Magarmal Bagh Srinagar, Chairman River Jhelum Co-operative House Building Society Limited Srinagar who was allegedly involved in Rs. 250 crore scam. According to the ACB, the preliminary enquiry revealed that Mir had moved an application to Secretary Cooperatives, Administrative Department of Co-operative Societies, seeking directions to J&K Cooperative Bank Ltd for grant of financial assistance to the tune of Rs 300 crore for taking over possession of 300-kanal of land in city outskirts for construction of Satellite Township. The application was endorsed to Registrar Cooperative Societies J&K for taking up the matter with Jammu and Kashmir State Cooperative Bank. Accordingly, J&K Cooperative Bank Srinagar sanctioned loan to the tune of Rs. 223 crore without adhering to any codal formalities. During enquiry, it was also surfaced that River Jhelum Cooperative Housing Building Society has not been even registered with Registrar Co-operative Societies, J&K. Hilal Ahmad Mir and the Bank Chairman and others have prepared fake and fictitious registration certificates and managed the sanction of loan amount to the tune of Rs. 223 crore. After hearing both the sides, the court observed that the allegations as referred above are of serious nature and speak about the volumes as to how the accused and others pursuant to criminal conspiracy under the notion of becoming rich within short span of time by adopting fraudulent and illegal means siphoned off huge public money. “The investigation in the case is in its infancy and big fishes who conspired with the Petitioner/accused are evading arrest. The involvement of politicians and other influentials in the aforesaid Bank scam is obvious. The release would hamper the investigation as it may influence the material witnesses and tamper with the evidence. Moreover the bank scams nowadays have become a routine mostly in the Nationalized Banks of the country. Their officers in the hierarchy under conspiracy with the influential having deep roots in the corrupt system of society have siphoned off huge public money and have even fled the country to escape the liability and penal consequences. Same modus-operandi has been adopted by the accused petitioner and other co accused so as to execute their despicable plans to rob the cooperative bank of UT. The scam in the Cooperative Bank has assumed public importance and the same is being agitated on a daily basis in the newspapers of UT. The deceitful and wicked intend of the petitioner in conspiracy with other accused is a design to falsely impress upon the public that society is registered and lawful and doing lawful business which otherwise was not so. The economic offences constitute a class apart and need to be visited with a different approach in the matter of bail. The economic offences are presumed to have deep rooted conspiracy involving huge loss of public money needs to be viewed seriously and considered grave offence affecting economy of the country as whole thereby posing threat to the financial growth of the country. Accused/Petitioner has played a key role in promoting a non-existent cooperative society to steal public money from the Cooperative Bank of UT as is evident from the police report. The accused therefore does not deserve any leniency. Any concession of bail in favour of the petitioner shall not be taken in good taste by the public at large who are in a state of shock when the 2nd banking scam in UT in this year surfaced. The faith that a common man has got in the judicial system shall get eroded if an accused is admitted to bail. Same will also encourage those who believe in resorting to illegal and fraudulent means so as to mint money”, the court observed and rejected the bail application.
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