16 officials suspended in Karuvannur bank case

Inquiry panel report points to serious lapses by Cooperative Department officials

Officials of the Cooperation Department, who failed to detect, report and take action against irregularities in the Karuvannur Service Cooperative Bank, have been placed under suspension pending inquiry.

In all 16 officials, including Joint Registrar (General), Thrissur, Mohanmon P. Joseph; M.D. Raghu, Joint Director/concurrent auditor, Kerala State Co-operative Bank, Palakkad; and Assistant Registrar M.C. Ajit, are facing action.

According to the preliminary report submitted to the government by the nine-member commission appointed by the Department of Cooperation, effective inspection of documents had not been done and no irregularities were reported from the bank, which falls under the Thrissur Joint Registrar.

No urgent steps were taken on even the issues pointed out in the audit report. Joint Director (audit), Thrissur, had the responsibility of audit in the bank.

There were serious lapses in administration and audit, the panel reported. One concurrent auditor post was allotted for the bank. But no special report was submitted on the irregularities in the bank. Auditors had not reported any serious financial irregularities, the panel noted.

As irregularities had been noticed in the audit from 2014-15, officials who were in charge of the general and audit sections from 2014-15, who had failed to take action, were placed under suspension pending inquiry, according to the order.

Two more arrested

Two more accused in the case were arrested on Wednesday.

The Crime Branch arrested second accused and former manager of the bank Biju Karim and third accused and bank accountant C.K. Jilse. Earlier, the court had rejected their anticipatory bail plea. First accused and former secretary of the bank T.R. Sunil Kumar was arrested on Monday.

The Crime Branch has filed a petition at the Irinjalakuda Magistrate Court to get Sunil Kumar, who has been remanded in judicial custody, for integration. There are six accused in the case.

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