PK Halder arrested in India
Former NRB Global Bank Managing Director (MD) Proshanta Kumar Halder, alias PK Halder, and his lawyer Sukumar were arrested in Ashoknagar of India's West Bengal this morning (May 14, 2022).
India's Directorate of Enforcement (ED) conducted raids at various premises linked to PK Halder and his associates in connection with a multi-million taka financial fraud, reports our New Delhi correspondent.
The raids were also conducted at the premises connected with PK Halder's associates -- Pritish Kumar Halder, Pranesh Kumar Halder -- and their associates in West Bengal.
PK Halder and his associates are accused of having embezzled thousands of crores of taka and siphoning them off to India and other countries, the ED said.
He has been staying in West Bengal by pretending to be an Indian citizen with the alias Shibshankar Halder after having managed to fraudulently obtain various government identities like ration card from West Bengal, Indian Voter ID card, Permanent Account Number and multi-purpose Aadhar card, the ED said in a statement.
The situation is similar of the other associates of PK Halder, it added.
The ED said it has ascertained that these Bangladeshi nationals have also managed to float companies in India on the basis of fraudulently obtained identities and have even purchased immovable properties at various places including in posh areas of Kolkata.
"The money taken by the accused was taken as loan from various banks by companies that only exist on paper. Realising that they had been cheated, the banks informed the financial intelligence unit of the Bangladesh police that subsequently approached the Indian government," an ED officer added.
PK Halder is accused in multiple cases filed over misappropriation of money in Bangladesh.
He had laundered about Tk 80 crore to Canada, according the Anti-Corruption Commission.
PK Halder had amassed about Tk 426 crore beyond his known sources of income, according to the probe by ACC Investigation Officer Md Salahuddin.
Halder came to the limelight during the anti-casino drives in the country in 2019.
He and his accomplices siphoned off around Tk 1,000 crore from four financial institutions -- Peoples Leasing and Financial Service, International Leasing and Financial Service Limited, FAS Finance, and Reliance Finance -- between 2009 and 2019.
The four institutions have been in dire straits since then, and one of those -- PLFS -- is now in the process of liquidation.
A number of banks are also facing difficulties in recovering their funds deposited with three of the financial institutions.
An investigator of ACC told The Daily Star that they have learnt about Halder's arrest from media reports.
They will submit charge sheets in the three cases against PK Halder soon.
"About Tk 225 crore was found in Halder's salary account. He took the money as commission for facilitating loan forgery," said an ACC official preferring anonymity.
Halder put his men at the helm of the financial institutions so that he could easily take loans from them and misappropriate the funds.
This was stated in a confessional statement by Uzzal Kumar Nandi, chairman of People's Leasing and Financial Services (PLFS), one of the four financial institutions defrauded by Halder.
So far 34 cases have been filed against PK Halder and his cohorts.
The bank accounts of 83 cohorts of PK Halder have been frozen since and properties worth around Tk 1,000 crore were seized.
Embargo was issued against 64 accused on travelling abroad.
Thirteen accused have been arrested so far and interrogated, and 11 accused made confessional statements before the court.