The scandal-hit Gupta family has been dealt another blow after a court bid to keep an Indian bank in South Africa failed.
The Bank of Baroda is the last financial institution in the country which is still prepared to lend to Gupta-linked companies.
South Africa’s major banks turned their backs on the businesses two years ago, saying they brought with them too much risk to their reputation.
As a result, 19 South African companies which have links to the Indian-born family are reliant on the Bank of Baroda, which announced it was closing its South African arm last month.
But attempts to stop the closure failed this morning when a judge in Pretoria ruled the bank’s right to shut down overruled their rights as customers, according to EyeWitness News.
Reuters news agency says the decision will make it all but impossible for the companies to operate in South Africa.
The Gupta family and their assets have found themselves under an increasingly harsh spotlight in recent years.
The three brothers have been accused of wielding enormous political influence in South Africa, with critics alleging they tried to “capture the state” in order to advance their business interests.