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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Non observation of AML/CFT guidelines for money remittance and other financial activities in post offices

Government of India
Ministry of Communication & IT
Department of Posts

Subject:- Non observation of AML/CFT guidelines for money remittance and other financial activities in post offices
                  Instances come to the notice of the department from time to time that, AML/CFT guidelines on international money transfer are not properly followed in post offices resulting into transactions of suspicious nature either going unnoticed or unreported, such as:
i.    high frequency of transaction in a single counter,
ii.   cash payment of high value amount where cheque payment is prescribed,
iii.  multiple transactions by a few customers
iv.  non verification of relationship between sender and the recipient, or unspecified relation,
v.   non verification of customer identity such as signature, physical description etc.,
vi.  Unverified, or, possibly, fictitious addresses, contact numbers, identities, names of the clients on either side, etc.
2.  Such occurrences are possible either due to lack of knowledge/training of the staff concerned, or distracted /overburdened staff unable to respond to the signals. However, sometimes these can also be deliberate. Further, lack of reporting of suspicious transactions/sending Nil STR can lead to incorrect reporting by the department. Considering the responsibility of the Department of Posts towards adherence to the Anti Money Laundering and Combating of Terrorist Financing measures as per PMLA 2002, strict compliance to AML/CFT guidelines for money remittance and other financial services is of utmost importance.
3. Circles are therefore requested to make all efforts, through their anti money laundering compliance cells and inspection and monitoring apparatus, to ensure adherence to AML/CFT guidelines by the post offices, especially   with high WUMT business. There is a need to sensitize the operational, supervisory and inspecting staff so that they are able to detect a suspicious transaction and take appropriate measures and report as per standing instructions on the subject. The need for a rigorous, continuous training regime cannot be over emphasized.  Nil STR reporting should be cross checked by divisions/regions/circles before onward submission of the same.
Niraj Kumar

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