Nirmala Sitharaman Meets PMC Bank Customers Assures "Will Talk To RBI Governor"

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Nirmala Sitharaman Meets PMC Bank Customers Assures
Rajat Mishra - 10 October 2019

New Delhi, October 10: Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said she would talk to the RBI governor this evening on the Punjab Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank crisis. She met a group of aggravated customers of the cooperative bank in Mumbai this afternoon just ahead of a press conference in the city.

The customers had gathered outside the BJP office at Nariman Point in Mumbai where Sitharaman was about to address the press conference.

"I will once again talk to the governor of Reserve Bank this evening to convey the distress of PMC clients," said Sitharaman.

PMC customers on Wednesday argued that the revised Rs. 25,000 limit on withdrawals imposed by the RBI is still too little, protested outside a Mumbai court. The customers were carrying placards that read "No Bail, Only Jail", they accused the RBI of not taking strict action against the officials who were involved in this fraud and appealed to prime minister Narendra Modi to intervene in the matter.

Sitharaman also explained to PMC Bank’s incensed customers that RBI takes appropriate action in cases where malpractice is observed, and it is doing what is to be done by law. Sitharaman said she has asked secretaries in her ministry to study in detail to find out what went missing in order to formulate amendments to avoid such cases in the future.

"We will try to bring in resolutions in the upcoming winter session of the Parliament and will also take legislative steps to avoid such cases," she said.

The PMC bank has stirred up debate about the health of India's troubled banking sector, which has been hit by a slew of frauds in the past.

A few days back Nirmala Sitharaman replied to a customer on Twitter when he threatened to commit suicide. Sitharaman urged to not write of “such extreme things” in the aftermath of the restrictions imposed by the RBI on the crisis-hit PMC Bank.

The RBI in a bid to allay fear among the bank customers took to Twitter on October 1 and said:"There are rumours in some locations about certain banks including cooperative banks, resulting in anxiety among the depositors. RBI would like to assure the general public that Indian banking system is safe and stable and there is no need to panic on the basis of such rumours," the RBI said in a tweet on October 1.”

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