2018 was a year of many goods and many bads. On one hand, we had Indian athletes bringing in plenty of honour in the form of medals, Indian cinema produced some gems and a lot of political introspection took place. On the other hand, we had the #MeToo movement shaking the country and exposing predators who caused trauma to countless women. 2018 was also the year of the biggest financial scams also took place this year, leaving a massive impact on the Indian economy. Take a look below.
#1 The PNB Scam
In what can probably be called the biggest scam of 2018, jewellery designer and merchant Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi were named in a CBI charge sheet for fraud of almost Rs 15,000 crores. Modi and Choksi, partners of Diamond R US, M/s Solar Exports and M/s Stellar Diamonds, approached PNB for 16th January for a Letter of Understanding as it needed to pay off its suppliers. Upon PNB demanding a 100% cash margin for a LoUs, the firms demanded they had received LoUs without any such pre-conditions in the past. After a detailed look into the history of their transactions, fraudulent activities causing grave loss to the bank were spotted. PNB filed a complaint, in which it also mentioned two of its employees. Days before news of the scam broke, Nirav Modi and his family absconded to the UK while the Government of India officially asks for their extradition.
#2 Nilesh Parekh scam
This one almost matches up to the mammoth PNB scam. Kolkata-based gold businessman, Nilesh Parekh, allegedly cheated over 20 banks for Rs 12,000 crores, according to the officials of Directorate of Revenue Intelligence. DRI later arrested Parekh on grounds of stealing 1,700 kg of imported duty-free gold as well as committing fraud. Earlier in 2017, the businessman was arrested by CBI for defaulting bank loans worth Rs 2,672 crores and weaning the money away through dummy firms based abroad.
#3 Rotomac Scam
In February 2018, a CBI FIR mentioned Rotomac of siphoning off 7 banks for nearly Rs 3000 crores. As per the FIR, Rotomac had channeled the approved loans to non-existent companies which eventually re-routed the money to Rotomac itself. Later, through the process of investigations, the Income Tax Department attached 11 bank accounts. The CBI lodged an FIR against Rotomac promoter Vikram Kothari. The matter is presently being probed into by both, the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
#4 Chanda Kochhar
The former CEO of ICICI Bank, Chanda Kochhar stepped down after allegations of her favouring illegitimate loans to Venugopal Dhoot-led company Videocon worth Rs 3,250 crores. Dhoot was also into a business ally to Kochhar's husband Deepak Virendra Kochhar, the co-founder and CEO of NuPower Renewables, originally founded as a 50-50 joint venture between the Dhoots and the Kochhar and Advani families (Chanda's brother Mahesh Advani).