President directs Silk Bank to refund Rs200,000 with profit to bank fraud victim

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President Dr. Arif Alvi has upheld a decision of the Banking Mohtasib (BM) and directed the Silk Bank Ltd (SBL) to refund the bank account of a fraud victim with Rs 200,000 along with the remaining profit till the date the amount is credited to his bank account. The President said Silk Bank had committed maladministration by failing to appoint honest officials at its bank branch and unjustly withholding the profit amount.

The President gave these directions while rejecting a representation of Silk Bank against a decision of BM in a case where a citizen of Multan, Muhammad Shafiq, the complainant, had invested Rs 200,000 in Term Deposit Receipt (TDR) with the bank, however, he was only paid profit for six months and when he went to withdraw the remaining profit from his account, he was informed that his TDR was fake and he had been hoodwinked by the ex-Branch Operations Manager.

The President in his decision held that since the complainant had produced the original TDR which bore the bank’s logo, duly stamped and signed by the ex-branch operations manager, the bank was responsible for any document signed by its employee on purportedly bank’s stationery and stamp of the bank. He added that there was no litmus test for the general public to differentiate between the original and fake stationery of the bank.

The President held that the bank’s contention, that profit amounts of six months were credited in the complainant’s account through fund transfers from multiple accounts of the customers and not from the bank’s payable account as normally done, carried no weight as a customer was usually satisfied when monthly profit was credited in his account. He said that it was not the duty of the customer to scrutinize the records and internal processes of a bank and to ascertain whether profit was credited in his account by the bank by routing through the bank’s books and proper vouchers were passed.

 

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