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  1. Narendra Modi government clips wings of Super Rich! 91 big businessmen land in no-fly list

Narendra Modi government clips wings of Super Rich! 91 big businessmen land in no-fly list

PM Narendra Modi, who swept into office in 2014 on a pledge to weed out graft and black money, is clamping down on delinquent borrowers and corporate cheats as he seeks a second term at national elections next year.

By: | New Delhi | Updated: March 23, 2018 10:56 AM
Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya, Modi government, billionaires, billionaire, PM MODI, pm narendra modi, modi, elections, lok sabha election India is clipping the wings of businessmen it considers a flight risk. (Reuters)

India is clipping the wings of businessmen it considers a flight risk. Weeks after the nation’s largest bank fraud investigation began, lawmakers, bureaucrats and court officials began drafting tighter rules to prevent citizens fleeing abroad with unpaid dues. A Mumbai court last week ordered top executives of indebted Aircel Ltd., owned by Malaysian billionaire T Ananda Krishnan, from leaving India as the failed mobile-carrier slipped into bankruptcy. The same day, Parliament began considering a bill to confiscate the assets of so-called fugitive economic offenders, while officials have drawn up a no-fly list of 91 people from firms identified as wilful defaulters or those that refuse to repay loans despite having the means to do so.

The measures may assuage public anger at billionaires who have absconded overseas, leaving behind failed businesses and debts that have contributed to the $210 billion of bad loans on banks’ balance sheets. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who swept into office in 2014 on a pledge to weed out graft and black money, is clamping down on delinquent borrowers and corporate cheats as he seeks a second term at national elections next year and to contain political damage from an alleged $2 billion fraud uncovered last month.

“We can’t allow people to make a mockery of the law,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told reporters in New Delhi this month. “You first indulge in loot and then refuse to submit to the jurisdiction of our legal system.” A broad crackdown is underway spanning federal criminal investigators, tax officials and the banking regulator, said Arpinder Singh, a partner with accountancy firm E&Y in Gurugram, near New Delhi, who heads fraud investigation and dispute services in India and emerging markets.

‘Lot of Pressure’

“There’s a lot of pressure on the industry right now,” Singh said, adding that the government measures are “very timely. Those facing the heat would be evaluating all their options,” he said. The latest measures are part of a wider campaign that includes reining in borrowers with unpaid dues. India’s central bank in February whittled down bad-debt resolution methods to one: if banks fail to fix a sour loan within 180 days, it will be referred to the bankruptcy court. The Reserve Bank of India “has taken some very important steps by making banks report delinquencies quickly and enabling strict timelines soon after defaults,” said Dhruv Phophalia, managing director of Alvarez & Marsal, who leads the professional services firm’s disputes and investigations practice in India.

‘Running Away’

“These steps are vital to deter wilful defaulters from running away,” he said, adding that the measures may bolster confidence in lending markets. Still, given the heightened implications of being referred to as a “wilful defaulter,” Phophalia said it’s important that government agencies follow an expedited, independent due process of law to decide who falls into that category.

Some 31 Indians have fled the country to avoid prosecution, lawmakers were told in parliament on March 14. Of those living in the U.K., only one person has been extradited to India during the past three years, with 16 requests pending, Vijay Kumar Singh, India’s junior foreign minister, has said.

The government needs to strengthen existing systems and extradition procedures instead of drafting new laws, said Aditya Wadhwa, a New Delhi-based criminal lawyer. Parliament is considering enacting the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill to give authorities the power to impound the assets of those who have fled the country after committing an economic offense involving 1 billion rupees ($15 million) or more.

‘Knee-jerk Reaction?’

“This legislation is a knee-jerk reaction of the government,” Wadhwa said. “We have an extradition law already in place. The question is why are we unable to effectively implement it?” Earlier asset seizures could only happen after a conviction order was secured, which meant delays, EY’s Singh said. Also the new law includes “benami,” a South Asian term that means assets bought in someone else’s name, which under the proposed legislation could also be seized.

“That’s a pretty serious power in the hands of authorities,” Singh said.

The government is also considering prohibiting 91 people from traveling overseas on account of their roles as owners or directors at 400 companies deemed wilful defaulters, according to a person familiar with the plans. Indian banks have also been asked to provide passport details of individuals who have signed applications or stood guarantors for soured credits of more than 500 million rupees, the person said.

Public Statement

So strong is the concern about businessmen leaving the country that brothers Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh, who are defending allegations that they siphoned off cash from two of their publicly traded businesses, assured in a Feb. 22 statement that “we are not going anywhere.”

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  1. Arun Pratap Singh
    Mar 23, 2018 at 4:24 pm
    Is it Anna effect?
    Reply
    1. Ramaswami Sampath
      Mar 23, 2018 at 8:33 am
      Why this was not applied to nirav?Or is it like locking stable after horse is stolen? It is a political gimmick.How mallya is staying in London?
      Reply
      1. sharath kumar
        Mar 23, 2018 at 12:06 am
        Why bring in strict rules now? Why didn't they bring when mallya absconded? It's clear that these kinda people are getting poitical support, and yet mallya is still in another country. And the politicians start the blame game just to confuse people. All you people out there as long as you keep voting and giving them power, there will be corruptions. You give the power to politicians the big shots are always connected to them, it's all about money. Unless you people yourselves do something, this will keep on going. There is no end to it. Keep voting, and bring in more trouble. Whatever group is in India, nothing good is going to happen.
        Reply
        1. Shashank Joshi
          Mar 22, 2018 at 5:35 pm
          Good step ... but only until the next scoundrel flees India
          Reply
          1. Rahul Joshi
            Mar 22, 2018 at 4:59 pm
            Feku Primeminster and his chootiya associates . First congress now BJP , All bool Bachan .. How many farmers died . How much of our soldiers are suffering because of bearucrasy. Our nation GDP is down in coming years it can be ruined . I was supporter of Feku Modi but now I don't trust him anymore . Our country need a change from these type of political Jomlaas and Jokers . We need to bring change in our society .
            Reply
            1. Giet Las
              Mar 22, 2018 at 1:15 pm
              One more shot to fool the people , let off all the big fish and now nets with big gaping holes which will further let of slippery fish .... alas they will make Republic of India into a Banana Republic .... jaago “mitron” .... True that common man is skinned and the “uncommon” get bene ed immensely !!
              Reply
              1. Jeripotula yadagiri rao
                Mar 22, 2018 at 12:52 pm
                If it is real then we take it positively but like many others if it is only a mere announcement then only GOD helps indians
                Reply
                1. Ram Peruri
                  Mar 22, 2018 at 12:47 pm
                  Eye wash? Be serious about it No business man is getting rich with his profits, only with loan amounts they are enjoying luxury life, nobody should dare further.
                  Reply
                  1. Kabir Oberoi
                    Mar 22, 2018 at 12:26 pm
                    Absolutely. It's high time such stringent however basic laws are in place so as to avoid people making a "Mickey" of the law / banks: take loans, live luxurious life's on others money and then flee from the country. Irrespective of the amount anyone who commits a financial fraud and if flees : his property / assets should be attached. This should be a "given thing" and not that one needs to battle in courts for decades to achieve this goal. Proactively a list of potential defaulters should be prepared and proactive measures should be employed rather than taking reactive measure post the scam. Prevention is better than cure.
                    Reply
                    1. Tapan Sarkar
                      Mar 22, 2018 at 9:47 am
                      It is a very welcome move. It would have been better if was introduced much before. Can’t we make extradition treaty with the countries where the fugitives have taken shelter? It would better if these defaulters along with their family members are socially boycotted. All their con utional rights are withheld till dues are paid. People should feel the heat what could be the consequences if public money is looted.
                      Reply
                      1. nan sat
                        Mar 22, 2018 at 6:50 am
                        Paid news. Why don’t they make the list public.they did not produce the list of wilful defaulters even to Supreme Court stating economy will collapse. They make public the name of petty thieves and home loan defaulters. But they want to safe guard these big corporate looters because they would have been fed by them.
                        Reply
                        1. joseph thomas
                          Mar 22, 2018 at 4:34 am
                          He has to do it because of election, why did he not do it long ago. These are eye washing political games. I am sure I will find super comments to object this. It's not you it's about the country. We find collections team standing in front of a normal citizens house to collect the amount. Then now no fly zone? How does it matter to a person who had made billions and more
                          Reply
                          1. Manoj K. Choudhury
                            Mar 22, 2018 at 5:13 pm
                            Why your favourite Italian made cross wearers didn’t do till they were in power. you guys are born to criticise only .
                            Reply
                          2. raj.ngl.thegreat Raj
                            Mar 22, 2018 at 12:14 am
                            In a long run, at least in next 10 years, every young generation now, who would become youth will be tracked for good. And they may not have binamies as such as of now. So the cur tracking helps in future. Those who already have wealth linked to Binamies may escape for a while in this generation, But in the long run I hope this tracking helps for the better benefit of India. With these population and diversities, if the govt is making some effort to do that, we really should appreciate that rather than having negative comments. Be aware that, we have to wait. The filthy smell of corruption will be there for a while. But if someone takes some steps to cleanse the system, we need to appreciate that. Lets just wait for some more time.
                            Reply
                            1. Isham Muhammad
                              Mar 21, 2018 at 10:17 pm
                              He will show lots of jumlaas.he is no 1 fraud
                              Reply
                              1. John Dsouza
                                Mar 21, 2018 at 9:58 pm
                                Economic Times had listed 12 Indian Corporates in the year 2016 who OWE over Rs 7.00 Lakh Crores. Still NO DEVELOPMENT . The second Layer with multiple of Six to the above 12 more or Less the Same Recovery value. Banks have Audits linked to RBI to CBDT, ED All under The Finance Ministry.Yet NO Procedures being Followed. Common man fails to pay his EMI the Recovery Team is at his/Her Doorstep. Scams in Co Operative Banks Where is All Leading To ? COMMON MAN pays for it Brilliant way to Enslave the People of this Nation.
                                Reply
                                1. Hameed Unis
                                  Mar 21, 2018 at 9:07 pm
                                  Mr.Modi I think this is also a kind of fooling the public, you had fooled us so much that nowadays even if you are working or talking truthfully looks like fooling us and is an added flavour to it. No worries make some more people also run away with loans we are there backing you by paying taxes from our hard earned monthly ries. We Indians are so kind hearted that even after paying so much taxes we for the beggars at road side, do charities to old age and helpless kids.
                                  Reply
                                  1. Ram Sam
                                    Mar 21, 2018 at 7:29 pm
                                    Comments are agreeable abt common man’s loans and emis. Banks just wants to make and show higher profits by providing more money than they dererve to these businessmen who would eventually runaway with lot of debt. Bill / law should address not just detection but also how to prevent it. Modi who has gathered lot of power in global politics should use his powers to bring these people from their hide outs and be prosecuted legally. Let them know that no one will be spared. So from now on people will afraid of fleeing. Also have some laws for the banks to follow abt their internal control measures.
                                    Reply
                                    1. Harvinder Maini
                                      Mar 21, 2018 at 5:54 pm
                                      IT IS ANOTHER JUMLA
                                      Reply
                                      1. Skrishna
                                        Mar 21, 2018 at 5:44 pm
                                        Billionaire travellers are high profile travellers and must be easy to keep track of whenever they go abroad for well trained government agencies without intruding on their privacy and affecting their rights. Government can frame a new policy if needed for their own safety and security so that nation's wealth is not squandered abroad. This will circumvent the present loophole which is being manipulatedone. Aa
                                        Reply
                                        1. Brajesh Kumar
                                          Mar 21, 2018 at 1:46 pm
                                          Govt. And media will give wide publicity to this law making, so that all will ful defaulters run away from India, before parliament starts functioning and bill is even tabled. All this defaulters have paid bribes to politicians to get such huge loans and then not repay the loan. Otherwise, even one EMI is missed, common man is skinned alive by recovery agents. Law doesn't work for politician, big business men in India. Otherwise, who will elect this fool Modi, if Ambani Adani don't media and votes for him.
                                          Reply
                                          1. Vishu Bana
                                            Mar 21, 2018 at 6:03 pm
                                            My Teachers always told me to stay away from people who talk negative People who have unique ability to find bad in good and negative in positive They meant people like Brijesh 😁
                                            Reply
                                            1. Shivendra Sharma
                                              Mar 21, 2018 at 11:00 pm
                                              Sure. And it’s the people like you who have a unique ability to throw dust in front of your own eyes and b negative in good when the reality is that negative opinions are the FACT of this present government. Better luck next time Mr. positive. It might do you good speaking the truth rather than keep bleabbering positive sh t only for the sake of positivity 😁
                                              1. Nitin Tamhane
                                                Mar 22, 2018 at 3:07 am
                                                What is negative in what Brajesh Kumar wrote? All of us who pay EMI know what happens when we miss it. I would say we should use services of the super sleuth Ajit Doval to bring back the fugitives and the thieves of the nation.
                                            2. Niranjan Waichal
                                              Mar 21, 2018 at 1:19 pm
                                              Ha ha ha .... I hope now the list of defaulters supporting BJP who are fleeing is over....
                                              Reply
                                              1. Nidhi Verma
                                                Mar 22, 2018 at 10:46 am
                                                What about those who ran away.....
                                                Reply
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