J&K Bank on Thursday issued a clarification after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposed monetary penalty on it.
RBI on Wednesday had issued two separate press releases stating that it had imposed monetary penalties on J&K Bank and Deutsche Bank on account of non-compliance of asset classification norms and KYC/AML guidelines.
The J&K Bank, in a statement, clarified that the penalty imposed has been on account of deficiencies pertaining to the past periods which stand fully rectified now.
In the statement, the bank's president corporate communications stated: "The Reserve Bank of India had pointed out divergence in classification in respect of some of the restructured accounts under rehabilitation package which included large borrower accounts of J&K state that were affected by the 2014 floods and 2016 disturbances in the valley, besides some deficiencies in the KYC compliance mechanism of the bank."
In respect of the IRAC guidelines, the president added, that the bank had restructured accounts with the aim and objective of providing relief and handholding to the business community who suffered due to prolonged disturbance in the valley.
"The RBI however declined the rationale and representations of the bank for a special dispensation for such borrowers; accordingly all such accounts were downgraded by the bank with retrospective effect as per the directions of RBI. Taking cognizance of non-compliance of IRAC norms by the bank in identifying and downgrading such affected accounts, RBI has imposed the penalty which is a practice followed by the RBI in all such cases," said the president.
The statement further said that the compliance framework of the bank has also been strengthened further to avoid such instances in future.
"We have great regard for the guidance and mentorship ofRBI, however, in the instant case, our intent was to support all these accounts which were good quality credit borrowers and their restructuring was not prompted due to intrinsic weaknesses in these accounts but due to certain extraordinary circumstances viz floods in 2014 and unrest in 2016," chairman and CEO of J&K Bank Parvez
Ahmed was quoted saying in the statement.
"After our requests for a special dispensation for such large borrower accounts were not acceded to by the regulator, we complied to the divergence pointed out and made the necessary provisions accordingly," he added.
He complimented the business community who came forward and cleared all their dues besides acknowledging the handholding approach of the J&K Bank in times of distress.