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Black money probe: Swiss banks mull anticipatory measures

PTI 02 Nov 2014, 19:41:46 PM IST

Berne/new Delhi: As probe into suspected black money stashed abroad by Indians gathers steam, banks in Switzerland are running from pillar to post to safeguard their interest while some are also considering financial provisions in their books for possible penal actions and legal costs.

At the same time, banks are also lobbying with the Swiss government to insist on putting in place necessary measures in their information-exchange and administrative assistance frameworks with India for safeguarding the interest of banking institutions during the subsequent prosecution and other legal or regulatory proceedings in the black money cases.

Sources, however, said that the role of some banks, as also that of certain bankers, has already come under scanner for acting in concert with the suspected black money hoarders and also for making ‘safe haven' promises for their funds.

The suspected lapses on the part of at least three large European banks, including two from Switzerland itself and the third having a significant presence in the Alpine nation, are also being probed for allegedly facilitating re-routing funds of certain Indian corporate houses back into their listed companies as foreign investments.

Capital market watchdog Sebi is probing at least three large global banks and many Indian companies for alleged round tripping of funds by way of multi-layered transactions, while the regulatory noose has further tightened in these cases with involvement of other regulatory and enforcement agencies.