Fraud in public sector banks down 51% to Rs 40,295 crore; The case is not falling fast

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that in the financial year ended March 2022, the amount involved in fraud by public sector banks has declined by more than 51 per cent to Rs 40,295.25 crore.

In response to an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the Reserve Bank stated that 12 PSBs (public sector banks) had reported fraud amounting to Rs 81,921.54 crore in the previous financial year 2020-21.

However, the number of fraud cases has not decreased at the same pace as the total 7,940 fraud cases reported by PSBs in 2021-22, as against 9,933 cases reported in FY21, according to Madhya Pradesh-based RTI activist Chandrasekhar Gaur.

The city-based Punjab National Bank (PNB) reported a maximum of Rs 9,528.95 crore, of which 431 such incidents were involved, according to RBI data on fraud reported by PSB in all departments in FY22.

State Bank of India, the country’s largest lender, has reported frauds to the tune of Rs 6,932.37 crore in about 4,192 cases – reflecting many small-scale frauds.

Bank of India reported fraud of Rs 5,923.99 crore (209 cases), followed by Bank of Baroda with Rs 3,989.36 crore (280); Union Bank of India reported fraud of Rs 3,939 crore (627), while Kanara Bank reported fraud of Rs 3,230.18 crore in only 90 cases – transactions that were high value fraud.

Among others, Indian Bank customers faced fraud of Rs 2,038.28 crore in 211 cases; Indian Overseas Bank Rs 1,733.80 crore (312); Bank of Maharashtra Rs 1,139.36 crore (72 cases); Central Bank of India 773.37 crore; UCO Bank reported fraud of Rs 611.54 crore (114 crore) and Punjab and Sind Bank reported fraud of Rs 455.04 crore out of 159 cases.

The RBI has said that the data may change subject to corrections / updates made by banks after the first reporting (in case of personal fraud). According to the RBI’s reply, less than Rs 1 lakh has been recorded as fraud since April 1, 2016.

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