Nabard staff told to ensure transparent transactions

Written by Sanjay Jog | Mumbai | Updated: Nov 18 2009, 04:51am hrs
State-run National bank for Agriculture & Rural Development (Nabard), in a bid to ensure that its officers and employees refrain from illegal transactions to create assets illegally, has directed that all transactions, in respect of movable and immovable properties, be made out of known sources and funds of the officers. In all such transactions, it should be examined whether the party/parties involved are constituents of the bank or parties that have substantial dealings with the bank. Also, the officer is required to clearly indicate the names of the vendor or the party from/to whom the property is to be acquired. Nabards 12-page circular to its 5,000 employees comes at a time when the enforcement directorate (ED) is investigating into the Rs 4,000-crore Jharkhand scam involving former chief minister Madhu Koda. The ED is also probing whether there was an alleged violation of banking norms.

Nabard sources told FE, The circular is about the conduct of its staff in the acquisition and disposal of immovable and movable properties. It makes it amply clear that there should not be an attempt to siphoning of funds from unexplained sources in the form of loans or gifts. Besides, all transactions, in respect of immovable and movable properties, should be strictly examined as to whether they are reasonable, compared to prevailing market rates. It should also be examined whether they are commensurate with the salary drawn by him from the known or declared sources of income.

More importantly, Nabard officers will not be allowed to speculate or utilise their funds with a view to earning profits from the transactions and its scrutiny would be to place a check on any undesirable transaction that is indicative of the officer indulging in speculative transactions or deals. All officers desiring to acquire/dispose of immovable property would have to obtain a prior permission.

They would also need to seek permission even before depositing/obtaining initial/earnest money. In case the employee fails to do so, the officer concerned would face scrutiny of such transactions. Besides, officers should not carry out transactions with vendors or parties which have substantial dealings with Nabard. Sources said borrowings from cooperative credit societies should invariably be supported by liability certificates from the society, indicating the amount of loan availed and its purpose.

Nabard sources also said employees will be granted gifts from close friends and relatives only after they produce the copy of gift tax clearance certificate. When the cost of the gift exceeds Rs 50,000, the officer has to submit a gift deed of declaration from the donor on a non-judicial stamp paper, duly attested by a notary or a magistrate.