Union Bank suspends 3 officials
Union Bank Limited has suspended three officials of its Gulshan branch over a liquidity shortage of Tk 19 crore in its vault.
Bangladesh Bank officials on Monday discovered that the vault was short of the funds mentioned in documents and that it was adjusted through a cheque.
The vault documents showed that it contained Tk 31 crore in cash. However, the central bank officials found Tk 12 crore in the vault and a cheque worth Tk 19 crore.
The fourth-generation bank has also formed an investigation committee.
The money was provided to a VIP customer after the banking period, said Hasan Iqbal, deputy managing director of the bank, in a press briefing held at its head office in the capital.
"Though it's a breach of rules, this is not the first-ever in the banking sector. Such transactions happen depending on bank-client relationships," he said.
"We have suspended three of our officials and formed an investigation committee," he said.
The vault account was adjusted in front of the BB team, he added.
A top official of a private commercial bank, preferring anonymity, said adjustment of money meant to be in vaults with cheques was a breach of law and a punishable offence.
There was a time branch managers engaged in such activities whenever top businesspeople came to withdraw money at the last moment of the trading day. But the central bank has become strict to stop such acts, he said.
So this practice is no longer prevalent in the banking sector now, he added.
Meanwhile, the central bank sent a letter to Union Bank Limited seeking an explanation about the incident and to find out the people involved in it.
"Our investigation team found some discrepancy in the bank's vault," said Md Serajul Islam, spokesperson of Bangladesh Bank.
An adequate amount of money as stated in documents was not found in the vault. Instead a cheque was there making up for the money not there, said Islam, who is also an executive director of the central bank.
"After analysing and investigating all the issues we will take decisions," he told The Daily Star.
As the bank does not provide evening banking, it is a bid odd that it paid the money to its client. But clients also have the right to avail their money, Islam told journalists at his office yesterday.
ABM Mokammel Hoque Chowdhury, managing director of Union Bank Limited, did not receive phone calls for comment.