RBI, Finance Ministry probing money laundering accusations
The finance ministry and the RBI are investigating allegations of money laundering practices at top private sector lenders ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank. Goldman Sachs, meanwhile, said the allegations, if proven, could slow growth for private sector lenders in India. The probe by the Reserve Bank of India and the government follows an investigation by an independent journalist, who said on Thursday that he had video footage of the lenders' branch employees suggesting to an undercover reporter methods to launder money. "All government agencies and regulators are working together to probe charges," Rajiv Takru, secretary of financial services, told a television channel on Friday. ICICI Bank Ltd, HDFC Bank Ltd, and Axis Bank Ltd each said on Thursday they were investigating the allegations but defended their internal controls aimed at preventing money laundering.