Woman claims she was cheated out of ₹13.5 crore by ICICI Bank manager in a large-scale fraud

Woman claims she was cheated out of ₹13.5 crore by ICICI Bank manager in a large-scale fraud

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The woman informed the BBC that she transferred ₹13.5 crore from her US bank account to ICICI Bank for investing in fixed deposits.

Financial Fraud Allegations Against ICICI Bank Manager: Indian-Origin Woman Claims Loss of ₹13.5 Crore

An Indian-origin woman, who returned to India from the US in 2016, claims she was cheated of ₹13.5 crore by an ICICI Bank manager through fraudulent activities. She told the BBC that she transferred the money from her US bank account to ICICI Bank for investing in fixed deposits, hoping it would grow to over ₹16 crore. Shveta Sharma, who moved to India with her husband in 2016, said she met the bank manager through a friend.

The woman claimed that the bank manager advised her to invest her savings in fixed deposits with an interest rate of 5.5% to 6%, citing negligible interest rates on bank deposits in the US.

Shveta Sharma recounted that the manager provided false statements, created a fake email using her name, and altered her mobile number in the bank records to prevent withdrawal notifications.

Between September 2019 and December 2023, Sharma deposited her entire life savings of approximately ₹13.5 crore in the bank, expecting it to grow to over ₹16 crore with interest.

In January of this year, Sharma discovered that all her money had disappeared after another bank official promised her better returns.

An ICICI Bank spokesperson stated that the implicated manager has been suspended pending investigation and that a complaint has been filed with the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police. The spokesperson assured that Sharma would be reimbursed her money and interest once her allegations are proven true, but she must await the investigation’s conclusion.

The spokesperson expressed surprise that Sharma had not been aware of these transactions and balances in her account over the past three years.

What ICICI Bank Said?

ICICI Bank has informed the customer that they are prepared to transfer the disputed amount of ₹9.27 crore (after deducting ₹2 crore from an already encashed fixed deposit) to her account, with a lien, pending the outcome of the investigation.

The bank stated that they have consistently sent transaction details to the customer’s registered mobile number and email ID since the accounts were opened several years ago. They find it perplexing that the customer claims to be unaware of these transactions and balances in her account over the past three years, only recently noticing a discrepancy in her account balance. They mention that this discrepancy should have been noticed by the customer when filing Income Tax returns. The customer alleges that her account’s mobile number and email ID were changed without her knowledge. However, the bank’s records show that notifications regarding these changes were sent to her original mobile number and email address registered with the bank. Additionally, the new number is listed on the website of a company owned by the customer herself.

ICICI Bank, considering itself an “aggrieved party,” has lodged a complaint with the Economic Offences Wing (EoW) of Delhi Police for a thorough investigation into the matter, which they believe is more complex than it appears. They express their willingness to fully cooperate with the police investigation.

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