Setback for PMC Bank depositors: Supreme Court refuses to entertain PIL seeking relief, asks petitioners to approach high court


In a major setback to the aggrieved depositors of the fraud-hit PMC Bank, the Supreme Court has refused to grant relief to the depositors after they approached the apex court with a Public Interest Litigation (PIL).

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said, “We are not inclined to entertain this petition under article 32 (writ jurisdiction). Petitioner can approach the high court concerned for appropriate relief”.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to an urgent hearing on a plea seeking directions for interim protective measures for insuring around 15 lakh people whose money is blocked in the scam-hit PMC Bank.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said the government is aware of the seriousness of the situation and the Enforcement Directorate is taking appropriate action against the culprit.

Advocate Shashank Sudhi, appearing for petitioner Bejon Kumar Mishra, said he has filed the petition on behalf of 500 Punjab & Maharashtra Co-operative Bank account holders seeking lifting of restrictions imposed by the RBI on cash withdrawals.

The Punjab & Maharashtra Co-operative Bank has been put under restrictions by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) following the discovery of a Rs 4,355-crore scam. Deposit withdrawals have been capped at Rs 40,000 over a six-month period, causing panic and distress among the depositors.

The PIL filed by Bijon Mishra, seeks full protection of over 15 lakh affected bank customers and 100 percent insurance cover over their savings with the institution, the channel added.

The development comes even as panic escalates among PMC Bank account holders due to the uncertainties over their deposits, which have been stuck after the Reserve Bank of India put a restriction on the lender for six months owing to massive understatement of NPAs.

The Reserve Bank on Monday increased the withdrawal limits for depositors of the scam-hit Punjab & Maharashtra Cooperative Bank to Rs 40,000 from Rs 25,000 per account over the next six months.

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