ED raids cooperative banks in Thrissur, Kochi

Enforcement Directorate
Enforcement Directorate logo. Representational image: Onmanorama

Thrissur: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday raided several cooperative banks in the State in the wake of the investigation surrounding the Karuvannur bank scam.
The raids were conducted at several places in Thrissur and Ernakulam including Ayyanthole Service Co-operative Bank and Thrissur Service Cooperative Bank. Members of the armed forces are also accompanying the ED officials.

The ED had revealed that Satheesh Kumar, the key accused in the controversial Karuvannur Cooperative Bank scam laundered money through another co-operative bank in the district.

The accused deposited unaccounted money worth Rs 40 crore in Ayyanthole Service Co-operative Bank. The agency has frozen five accounts of Satheesh and his family members in this bank. Searches are also being carried out at the houses of Satheesh Kumar’s benamis.

Raid at Thrissur coop bank

Interestingly, CPM leader M K Kannan is the president of the Thrissur Service Co-operative Bank. He is also the vice-president of the Kerala Bank. According to sources, the ED raid was conducted in the presence of Kannan, who is also the vice-president of the Kerala Bank.

In addition to the black money brought from abroad, Satheesh Kumar has also laundered huge amounts of bribe money, including that of police officers, through cooperative banks. A senior official in the judiciary was also involved.

These officials entrusted their money in the hands of Satheesh for a monthly interest. Satheesh's deposited the money collected from them in benami accounts of various co-operative banks and laundered it.

Ayyanthole Co-operative Bank

Satheesh laundered black money worth Rs 40 crore in the past ten years through the CPM-ruled Ayyanthole Co-operative Bank alone, sources said. He has undertaken black money transactions through about 10 CPM-ruled co-operative banks.

The ED has recovered documents to show that Satheesh deposited cash in five accounts in his own name and in the name of his family members, and then withdrew it.

The ED uncovered the details by examining records of Satheesh's transactions in Ayyanthole Bank from December 12, 2013 to September 5, 2023:

  • On December 27, 2013, alone, a total of Rs 12.50 lakh reached Satheesh’s account through 25 different transactions of Rs 50,000 each. Two weeks later, Rs 6 lakh was transferred to another account.
  • On March 27, 2014, a total of Rs 10 lakh reached Satheesh's account in 20 transactions of Rs 50,000 each. A month later, Rs 9.5 lakh was withdrawn.
  • Between May 16 and 19 of the same year, Rs 15.50 lakh reached his account in 31 transactions of Rs 50,000 each. A few days later, Rs 16 lakh was withdrawn.
  • A month later, Rs 35 lakh was transacted through the account several times.
  • On June 6, 2018, a cash deposit of Rs 30 lakh was made in a single day. In the meantime, cash deposits worth Rs 7-10 lakh were made on many days.
  • Though all the money was deposited as cash, most of them were withdrawn after being transferred to other accounts. After the ED sought a detailed report, the bank submitted all the details.

The wife of the CPM district secretariat member, who is a member of the two-member inquiry commission appointed by the CPM to probe the Rs 300 crore Karuvannur Co-operative Bank fraud case, is an official of the Ayyanthole Co-operative Bank. The daughter of the former district secretary of the CPM is also working in this bank.

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