NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday ordered the State Bank of India (SBI) and banking regulator Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to maintain the status quo with regard to Reliance Communications (Rcom) accounts owned by Anil Ambani, Reliance Telecom, and Reliance Infratel, which have been classified as “fraudulent” accounts by the state lender.
The court passed the order upon hearing a petition from former Reliance Communications director Punit Garg, who challenged the 2016 central bank circular regarding reporting the accounts as fraud. Garg argued that the circular violates the principles of natural justice without giving the parties an opportunity to be heard. The bank, meanwhile, said its audit division found evidence of embezzlement and other irregularities.
In view of the orders made earlier by the High Court in similar cases, Judge Prateek Jalan ordered the State Bank of India to “maintain the status quo until the next court date” in this regard. which concerns the accounts of the three companies. The court added that SBI and RBI were free to take any measures of an investigative or complaint-making nature, or similar proceedings against the former directors and the three companies, regardless of the contested action of disclosure of the accounts of the society. three companies as fraud accounts.
This could open up the possibility of a CBI investigation since the rules require banks to file a complaint with the Central Bureau of Investigation if the amount involved in the fraud is more than Rs 1 crore. The court further stated that the Respondents, including the RBI and the three companies in the Anil Ambani group, were free to file their responses to the motion by January 11 and listed the case for hearing on January 13.