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This article was first published 1 year ago  » Business » Chanda Kochhar, her husband sent to CBI custody till Dec 26

Chanda Kochhar, her husband sent to CBI custody till Dec 26

Source: PTI
Last updated on: December 24, 2022 21:49 IST
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A Mumbai court on Saturday sent former ICICI Bank CEO and MD Chanda Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar to CBI custody till December 26 in a case pertaining to alleged cheating and irregularities in loans sanctioned by the bank to Videocon Group companies.

Chhanda Kochhar, Deepak

Photograph: ANI Photo

The Central Bureau of Investigation also applied to the court seeking permission to invoke the charge of `criminal breach of trust' under the Indian Penal Code against them.

The defence lawyer, on the other hand, claimed that ICICI Bank had stated in the past that it had not suffered  any wrongful loss, and pointed out that the "main borrower" had not been arrested yet.


Chanda Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar were arrested by the central probe agency after brief interrogation at its Delhi office on Friday.

On Saturday, they were produced in Mumbai before special holiday court judge S M Menjonge who remanded them in the custody of the CBI.

The agency has alleged that ICICI Bank sanctioned credit facilities to the tune of Rs 3,250 crore to the companies of Videocon Group promoted by Venugopal Dhoot in violation of the Banking Regulation Act, RBI guidelines and the credit policy of the bank.

During the remand hearing, the probe agency, represented by special public prosecutor A Limosin, argued that Chanda Kochhar also committed `criminal breach of trust' under section 409 of the IPC by sanctioning credit facility of Rs 300 crore to Videocon International Electronics Limited (VIEL).

Later, she converted Rs 64 crore allegedly received from V N Dhoot, managing director of Videocon group, for her own use by investing it in her husband's company NuPower Renewable Limited, it alleged.

Being a public servant, she was entrusted with the bank's funds and she should have discharged her responsibility in accordance with ICICI Bank's guidelines, the CBI said.

The agency filed an application seeking to invoke IPC section 409 (criminal breach of trust) against her, in addition to the existing sections. It will be heard on Monday.

The CBI, in 2019, had named the Kochhar couple and Dhoot, along with companies Nupower Renewables (NRL) managed by Deepak Kochhar, Supreme Energy, Videocon International Electronics Ltd and Videocon Industries Limited as accused in the First Information Report registered under IPC sections related to criminal conspiracy and provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

According to the CBI, in 2009, a sanctioning committee of ICICI Bank headed by Chanda Kochhar sanctioned a term loan of Rs 300 crore to VIEL in contravention of rules and policies of the bank.

The very next day, V N Dhoot transferred Rs 64 crore to NRL from VIEL through his company Supreme Energy Private Limited (SEPL), it said, in "furtherance of criminal conspiracy with other accused persons" Chanda Kochhar sanctioned various loans to Videocon Group, the CBI claimed.

As part of another quid pro quo, Chanda Kochhar lived in a flat without paying any consideration during the period she dealt with the loan proposal of Videocon Group, it added.

The flat was under litigation between Videocon and Deepak Kochhar.

In 2016, the flat, valued at Rs 5.25 crore in 1996, was transferred to Quality Advisor, a family trust of Deepak Kochhar, for a meagre amount of Rs 11 lakh, the CBI alleged.

The agency sought the couple's remand for three days, alleging that Chanda Kochhar was not cooperating with investigation, and giving evasive replies.

She denied the knowledge of any pecuniary transactions between her husband and Dhoot, it said.

The CBI also accused Deepak Kochhar of concealing vital facts and not cooperating with the investigation.

Senior advocate Amit Desai, appearing for the Kochhars, opposed the remand, saying that the "main borrower” of the loan has not been arrested, and the present accused were “not the beneficiary of any amount”.

Desai also  brought to the court's notice a letter written by ICICI Bank to the CBI in July 202I stating that there “was no wrongful loss” to it in any of the transactions under question.

The court, after hearing both the sides, observed that the perusal of the case diary showed that the offence is of “serious nature”.

Innocence of the accused cannot be inferred at this stage, the judge said, remanding the Kochhars in the custody of the CBI till Monday.

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