Updated: September 8, 2020 7:24:59 AM
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday arrested Deepak Kochhar, husband of former ICICI Bank chief Chanda Kochhar, in connection with an investigation into money laundering of loans allegedly given by ICICI Bank to Videocon Group for financial consideration.
An ED source said Deepak was called for questioning in connection with some “fresh evidence of money trail” in the case. However, after refusing to come to Delhi citing the epidemic, he was questioned by a team of officials in Mumbai. “He did not cooperate with us and so we had to arrest him,” said a senior ED official.
The ED is investigating Deepak and Chanda Kochhar besides Videocon Group promoter VN Dhoot for alleged money laundering in the case of loans given to Videocon Group by ICICI Bank. The loans later became non-performing assets (NPAs). The Videocon Group allegedly invested in companies held by Deepak Kochhar after disbursing loans cleared by Chanda.
According to the ED, its investigation revealed that the loan was refinanced and new loans worth Rs 1,730 crore were approved to M / s Videocon Industries Limited (VIL) and its group companies. These loans became NPAs for ICICI Bank on June 30, 2017.
In June this year, the ED attached assets worth Rs 78.15 crore attached to Kochhar. These included residential flats, land, cash and plant and machinery located in Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.
“Investigation revealed that Rs. Out of a loan of Rs 64 crores. 300 crore sanctioned by the committee headed by Chanda Kochhar headed by M / s Videocon International Electronics Limited was transferred to M / s Nupower Renewables Pvt. Ltd. (NRPL, formerly known as M / s NuPower Renewables Limited, husband of Deepak Kochhar’s company, Chanda Kochhar), on 08.09.2009 by VIL, exactly one day after the loan was disbursed to ICICI Bank. Further, a net revenue of Rs. 10.65 crores was generated by NRL from these tainted funds. Therefore, the offense amounted to Rs. 74.65 crore was transferred / generated in NRPL, ”an official statement by ED said at the time of the attachment.
The ED claimed that its investigation also revealed that Chanda Kochhar and her family acquired an apartment in Mumbai, owned by a Videocon group company, by making book entries on which the company had been transferred to its family trust Acquired through.
The ED had filed an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) based on the CBI FIR dated January 22. In its FIR, the CBI has alleged that Chanda Kochhar had “dishonestly” committed loans worth hundreds of crores. Videocon Group “in violation of rules and policy … by abusing its official position”.
It is also alleged that Chanda Kochhar, who took early retirement in October last year in the wake of the allegations, admitted “illegal gratification” through her husband Deepak Kochhar, after the company in which Vidocon Group invested Bank lent by ICICI.
Apart from Kochhar and Dhoot, Deepak Kochhar’s company Nupawar Renewables Limited, Supreme Energy Private Limited, Videocon International Electronics Limited (VIEL) and Videocon Industries Limited (VIL) have been named in the FIR.
The agency has also hired scanner top bankers like ICICI CEO Sandeep Bakshi, K Ramkumar, Sanjoy Chatterjee, NS Kannan, Zarine Daruwala, Rajeev Sabharwal, KV Kamath and Hosur Khusrokhan for their role in sanctioning loans to Videocon. .
On March 31, 2018, The Indian Express gave its first report How In December 2008, Venugopal Dhoot of Videocon Group set up a company with two relatives of Deepak Kochhar and Chanda Kochhar; It then gave a loan of Rs 64 crore to this company through a wholly owned entity before it transferred the latter’s ownership to the trust under Deepak Kochhar for just Rs 9 lakh.
In questions of ownership and conflict of interest, the transfer of the company to Deepak Kochhar took place six months after he gave a loan of Rs 3,250 crore from ICICI Bank to Videocon Group. About 86 percent (Rs 2,810 crore) of that debt is outstanding and the Videocon account was declared NPA in 2017.
The CBI started investigating the case in December 2017 after initiating a preliminary inquiry. The investigation alleged that ICICI Bank has sanctioned approximately Rs 3,250 crore loan facilities to Trend Electronics Limited, Century Appliances Limited, Kell Limited, Value Industries Limited and Ivan Fraser & Company India Limited for all companies belonging to Videocon Group. . .
“ICICI Bank Limited officials provided credit facility to these companies in violation of the Banking Regulation Act, Reserve Bank of India guidelines and the bank’s credit policy. It was also alleged that as part of Quid Pro Quo, Sh. VN Dhoot invested Rs 64 crore in Messrs Newpower Renewables through Supreme Energy Private Limited (SEPL) and also transferred SEPL to Pinnacle Energy Trust managed by Deepak Kochhar through circuit route from 2010 to 2012.
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