By - February 22, 2018

N.K. Kishore, Senior Branch Manager; N. S. Nandi, Insurance Advisor, ICICI Prudential, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh

 “Account khol lo, amount transfer karo, nikal lo saving, account band karlo (Open an account, get the amount transferred, withdraw the savings and close the account)” – Nandi

When the Cobrapost journalist visited this branch of ICICI Prudential at Ghaziabad, the branch was close to closing. But instead of asking the visitor to come the next day, N.S. Nandi welcomed the visitor in the true spirit of atithi devo bhava. The reporter gave him the story.

Nandi immediately offers a solution: “Lamba plan ek toh humare paas hai pandreh saal ka(One long-term plan that we have is for 15 years).”

But all he has is cash and he wants to convert it into white, the reporter tells him. Nandi thinks for a while and then suggests:  “Aaap daalo … lambe time ke liye toh …  aap saat saal daalo, nikalna 15 saal baad…guaranteed saving mein daalo… ye guaranteed jo  bond hote hain bank ke … TDS nahin katega (You put in for longer term … so you put it in for 7 years, withdraw after 15 years … put it in guaranteed saving plan … these are the bank’s guaranteed bonds … there will be no TDS).” Nandi calls his boss asking for a meeting for a “moti investment” (heavy investment). Then Nandi takes the journalist to his boss, a couple of floors above his office.

While waiting for the elevator, the conversation picks up and Nandi claims: “Humne pehle bees bees lakh tak ke daale hue hain … bees bees lakh cash daale hue hain (I have done up to Rs. 20 lakh before …I have done cash up to Rs. 20 lakh).” Such confidence perhaps come naturally to someone like Nandi who has been working with ICICI for about 9 years.

The Cobrapost journalist states the purpose of his visit to Branch Manager N.K. Kishore:  Rs. 60 lakh has to be invested in cash on behalf of a minister in the name of the minister’s wife, in the name of his frontman, the reporter himself and in the name of the frontman’s wife. Asked if he can meet the minister at his residence the next evening to complete the formalities, Kishore says: “Bilkul koi dikkat nahin hai (I have no problem at all).”

Kishore enquires about the mode of investment: “Cash mein jaana hai ya check mein jaana hai (Has it to go in cash or in cheque)?” In cash. But then there is a problem, says Kishore: “Cash mein thoda sa ek ye hai ki chaar lakh rupaye tak ka humein IT Department ko nahin dena padta…chaar lakh se upar ka humein IT Department ko, agar wo chaahein, to humein dena padta hai (The thing with cash is that you don’t have to report it to IT Department when the amount is up to Rs. 4 lakh, above Rs. 4 lakh, if they ask, we have to report it to the IT Department).”

So how do we fix this problem? Kishore suggests: “Ek ek file chaar–chaar lakh ka jaata hai … Thode din baad … break karke hum kar sakte hain. Jaise abhi ek kar diya, phir hum saat–aath din baad kar dein… ek aapke naam pe, ek aapki wife ke naam pe, aise kar sakte hain (We send a file for Rs. 4 lakh … after few days we can break it up. Suppose, you put in one now and then another after 7–8 days … one in your name and another in your wife’s name … we can do it this way).” After telling his client that the yields on this plan depend on government securities, he claims: “Section 10-10(D) mein poora white hoke ayega …aapke direct account mein daal diya jayega (It will all come out in white under Section 10-10(D). It will be credited to your account directly).”

The Income Tax authorities may come knocking on your door, cautions Kishore, if you invested beyond Rs. 4 lakh. So, it is better to break it and do it without a PAN. Kishore gets nostalgic about his earlier deals:  Humare yahaan pehle pachas lakh ek crore tak bhi chale jaate the. Ab do–teen saal se aise guideline ayeen hain…ye bhi jo ho raha hai wo chhe mahine ek saal tak hoga aur phir isme bhi… lekin aapko koi problem nahin hogi. Aap to purane contract wale hain (There were times when cash up to Rs. 50 lakh to 1 crore used to go. But there are new guidelines in force since the past 2 to 3 years … even this is going to last for another 6 months to a year.. .but you will have no problem because you’d already be in an old contract).”

On his way out, Nandi says that  the monthly target of his branch ranges from Rs. 2 crore to 3 crore. It is no wonder that the amount our reporter proposed to invest on behalf of the politician was regarded as small beer. In Nandi’s words, “Ye to kuch bhi nahin … yahan to badi tagdi investment aati hai (This is pittance. Here, we receive really big investments).” You invest for 7 years and withdraw the money after 15 years. There are no hassles. It is tax free. Finally, he advised how the money could be withdrawn without leaving a trace: “Account khol lo, amount transfer karo, nikal lo saving, account band karlo (Open an account, get the amount transferred, withdraw the savings and close the account).”

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