A bank staffer from Kerala, who had been absconding for three months after being accused in a cheating case concerning Rs 8 crore, was nabbed from Bengaluru on Sunday. Vijesh Varghese, a native of Pathanapuram in Pathanamthitta, went absconding in February with his wife and two children after it came to light that he allegedly duped Canara Bank, where he worked as a clerk, of Rs 8 crore. He will be brought to Pathanamthitta on May 17.
According to police, his wife and children were staying with him and they will also be brought to Pathanamthitta in another vehicle. Though police had registered a case against him based on a complaint filed by the bank, they were not able to find him so far. According to the complaint against him, Vijesh allegedly transferred Rs 8,13,64,539 (Rs 8.13 crore) from 191 accounts in Canara Bank to his and his wifeâ€™s account over a span of 14 months. CCTV visuals from the bank showed that Vijesh had been using the computers of his colleagues and the branch manager when they were not around. His colleagues had informed the police that Vijesh used to work extra hours, even coming in on holidays.
An internal enquiry by the bank found that senior officials at the bank failed to prevent the alleged cheating by Vijesh, following which the branch manager, assistant manager and five officers at the bank were suspended. The police alleged that Vijesh misused the passwords of account holders in the bank to get the money. Pathanamthitta police chief R Nishanthini told the media that they haven't questioned Vijesh yet. She said that Vijesh was living in Bengaluru under the name Vikas Kumar after renting a house on February 29.
â€œHe closed many fixed deposits of customers and transferred the amount to four other bank accounts. Two were in his name and two others were in his wife's name," R Nishanthini said. "From these four accounts he transferred money to other various accounts. He used the money to invest in the share market and also to play rummy online," she added. She also said that Rs 6.5 crore was transferred to these four accounts and the rest of the amount was transferred to other â€˜suspicious accountsâ€™. The case is being investigated by the Crime Branch and further details are awaited.