Both victims of bank frauds die of heart attack
The closure of the PMC Bank has claimed two innocent lives protesting against the bank to return their funds which have been in a deadlock since its closure on September 26, 2019.
Today, October 15, Fatto Punjabi breathed his last after suffering from a heart attack. Sources say that he had participated in protests against the curbs imposed by the RBI on the PMC Bank in the last few days. He held a bank account in PMC’s Mulund Branch. 95% of people in Mulund Colony hold accounts with PMC Bank.
This is the second death of a depositor within 24 hours. Yesterday, after attending a protest march outside a city court, 51-year-old Sanjay Gulati, a resident of Oshiwara, succumbed to a heart attack. Fate dealt Gulati a cruel hand a second time around. After suffering from stress of the loss of his job as a former employee of Jet Airways, Rs. 90 lakh being stuck in the bank’s lockers, added to it, leading to his untimely death.
Here, his wife recounts the horror Gulati and his family went through due to the crisis.
With protests and meetings taking place all over the city, it is the customers who are trying to find a way to recover their money.
“The government can implement Article 370 in no time, then what is stopping them from helping 16 lakh bank depositors of PMC bank?" asked one depositor.
And yet, it is preposterous that only now, after these deaths that the Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that he would ‘request’ the Centre to resolve the crisis in the PMC Bank.
Why Are There No Organized Protests?
Ever since the RBI imposed restrictions on the bank, it has only been the people afflicted who have staged protests against the harsh decision meted out by the apex bank of the country. Hardly any politicians, housing organizations or official political bodies have come out in support except for screaming foul from the sidelines.
One such organization is the Oshiwara Lokhandwala Citizens' Association (OLCA), whose Chairman and Trustee are film-maker and BJP supporter Ashoke Pandit and Rakesh Coelho, the BJP Secretary of the NW District Committee, respectively.
The residents of most of the MHADA buildings that fall under the OLCA have their accounts with the PMC Bank because this was the only bank that existed at the time the society was formed. Even official financial accounts of the buildings are registered with the same bank. Why is it then there is no organized protest from the association?Is just holding a candle march and observing a two-minutes silence the hallmark of a protest?
A pithy tweet by Ashoke Pandit condemning the bank didn’t do much.
He later got called out for not tagging the BJP authorities in the tweet, like he does in every other.
Captain Rakesh Coelho maintained his silence over Gulati’s death. Instead, he tweeted about –
It is public knowledge that the Rajneet Singh, son of a BJP strongman was on the board of the PMC Bank and HDIL, both. Tara Singh, Rajneet’s father had been the BJP’s four-time MLA from Mulund.
The BJP has placed members like Pandit and Coelho as buffers for the public to not react against such scams. The organization, has instead been campaigning for the BJP at the micro level by targeting the public through Whatsapp groups. These messages are solely meant to divert the people’s attention from such major issues to irrelevant issues to perform damage control and protect the image of the tainted government.
A Looming Economic Crisis
While the RBI claimed that the Indian banking system was safe and stable, economics experts have a different view.
“The financial crisis that began with the IL&FS debacle … seems to be entering its climactic phase,” said SaurabhMukherjea, Mumbai-based founder of Marcellus Investment Managers. “The share price volatility for banks and lenders is expected to continue for the coming few months.”
On Thursday, Finance Minister NirmalaSitharaman, after meeting the distraught depositors of Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative Bank, said that the government could bring a legislation in the winter session of Parliament to improve governing of cooperative banks, if necessary.
The PMC Bank crisis has had a far reaching psychological and emotional impact on all those who have been affected by its closure.
The only way to stand up against it, is to VOTE for the right government. It is only the correctness of our vote or the absence of it that will bring the culprits to book.
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