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KATHMANDU: Bhuwan Bahadur Majhi, 43, who had been on a fugitive list for half a year following the conviction of a banking offense by the court, was arrested two days ago.
The High Court Patan, Lalitpur had found him guilty in the case of banking fraud where the suit amount was Rs 12 million.
The Kathmandu Valley Crime Investigation Office had detained him from Shantinagar of Kathmandu Metropolis-31.
Bhim Bahadur Tamang, 47, another guilty in the banking offense was recently arrested by the police and presented before the court.
The suit amount in Tamang’s case is Rs 960 thousand. Majhi and Tamang are just two representatives who were on the run after being declared guilty on the banking fraud cases and finally caught by the police.
The District Police Range, Kathmandu has a long list of fugitives in the banking fraud and those accused of the charges.
According to Superintendent of Police Dinesh Raj Mainali who was lately transferred from the Range, total 1,741 complaints of banking offences were registered in the Range during the fiscal year 2077/78 BS (2020-21) and the number jumped to 2,715 the following year.
In the first six months of the current fiscal year, the figure has already touched 2,999.
The assessment of SP Mainali is that when people’s increasing access to banking services, the risk of falling prey to bank fraudsters is on the rise.
He echoed the need of making people well-informed about the Banking Offence and Punishment Act, 2064 BS (2008) with its effective enforcement.
The users of online banking are on the rise. The use of multiple digital payment facilities, such as connectIPS, mobile banking and other means of digital payment is increased of late.
The COVID-19 pandemic played a significant role to intensify the use of digital spheres, including digital banking in Nepal too.
The official data about the cases of banking offence suggest that though the use of digital banking system has saved our time and has been convenience to us, the risk of users falling prey to possible fraudsters is ratcheted up.
The cases of stealing money from other’s account by hacking the onetime password have surged.
In lack of sufficient knowledge of proper use of the online banking system, the risk of transferring money to unknown/unintended account also prevails.
In accordance with the Act, if the suit amount is up to one million rupees, there shall be the imprisonment up to one year; if the suit amount is above one million rupees, and up to five million rupees, it requires imprisonment from one year to two years.
Similarly, if the suit amount is above five million rupees and up to ten million rupees, it demands imprisonment from two years to three years.
As per law, if the suit amount is above ten million rupees with whatever amount, it mandates imprisonment from three years to five years.
The Act has the provision of punishment to the persons, creating hindrance in regard with dealing the case of banking offence, the adjudicating officer may punish him/her with an imprisonment up to six months or a fine up to five thousand rupees or both based on the report of the Officer involving in Investigation and inquiry.
The Kathmandu Valley Crime Investigation Office’s Superintendent of Police Krishna Prasad Koirala said the cases of check bounce are also on the rise now.