RBI penalises Axis, ICICI, HDFC Bank over KYC norms violation

BT Online Bureau   Mumbai     Last Updated: June 10, 2013  | 00:00 IST

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has penalised Axis Bank, HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank for violation of Know Your Customer (KYC) norms and anti-money laundering guidelines.

The penalty follows scrutiny carried out by RBI of books of accounts, internal control, compliance systems and processes of these three banks at their corporate offices and some branches during March-April.

The central bank imposed a penalty of Rs 5 crore on Axis Bank, Rs 4.5 crore on HDFC Bank and Rs 1 crore on ICICI Bank.

"After considering the facts of each case ... Reserve Bank came to conclusion that some of the violations were substantiated and warranted imposition of monetary penalty," the central bank said in a statement.

The scrutiny was conducted to investigate into the allegations of contravention of KYC/anti-money laundering guidelines against the banks following expose by online portal Cobrapost.

Although the investigation did not reveal any prima facie evidence of money laundering, RBI said: "Any conclusive inference in this regard can be drawn only by an end-to-end investigation of the transactions by tax and enforcement agencies."

The central bank further said a similar scrutiny was being conducted at corporate offices of 36 other banks and "the process of follow up action in respect of these banks is at different stages of its completion."

with inputs from PTI

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