Sessions Court, Greater Bombay: Abhijeet A. Nandgaonkar, Additional Sessions Judge, issued summons, being of the prima facie opinion that Chanda Kochhar, Former MD and CEO of ICICI Bank may have misused her official position in sanctioning loans to Videocon Group and got illegal gratification through her husband.
Accused 1 was the MD and CEO of ICICI Bank, whereas accused 2 is the husband of accused 1.
During June, 2019 to October, 2011 ICICI Bank sanctioned six high-value loans to various companies of Videocon Group in the tune of Rs 300 crores which was in contravention of the rules and policy of sanctioning committee. On the very next day of when the said amount of Rs 300 crores was disbursed, an amount of Rs 64 crores was transferred by the accused V.N. Dhoot to NRPL managed by accused Deepak Kochhar through his company SEPL.
Chanda Kochhar got illegal gratification/undue benefit through her husband.
ICICI Bank sanctioned various loans to Videocon Group of Companies. However, the said loans were turned NPA resulting in wrongful loss to ICICI Bank and wrongful gain to the borrowers and accused persons.
After Chanda Kochhar took over the charge of ICICI Bank as MD and CEO, all the credit facilities as stated above, sanctioned to Videocon group of companies.
The said loans were sanctioned by the different sanctioning committees and Chanda Kochhar was one of the Committee member which sanctioned RTL of Rs 300 crores to VIEL and Rs 750 crores to VIL.
Hence, total misappropriation/loss caused was of Rs 1,730.
After initiation of investigation, all the accused persons were arrested and it was found that Deepak Kochhar ( accused 2) had a close acquaintance and relationship with V.N. Dhoot, Chairman and Managing Director of Videocon Industries Ltd.
Accused 1 Chanda Kochhar had neither disclosed the above fact nor recused herself from sanctioning committee of ICICI bank while sanctioning loan to VIL or VIEL.
Day after the sanctioning of loan to VIEL Rs 64 crores was transferred to NRPL, owned and managed by accused Deepak Kochhar. The said was illegal gratification to accused Chanda Kochhar, through accused Deepak Kochhar by abusing her position as MD and CEO of ICICI Banking sanctioning the loan.
The said proceeds of crime Rs 64 crores transferred to NRPL through a web of companies was used to purchase properties.
Bench in view of the facts and circumstances of the case, opined that it appears that accused Chanda Kochhar misused her official position in granting the loan to accused V.N. Dhoot and/or Videocon Group Companies and got illegal gratification/undue advantage through her husband accused Deepak Kochhar, per se quid pro quo web-transactions, created by the accused persons through various companies for siphoning off money and proceeds of crime.
Hence, the above-stated constituted the commission of schedule offence, which gave rise to register the offence under Section 3 read with Section 70 punishable under Section 4 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
Process to be issued against the accused nos. 1 to 11, accused 2 who is in custody be served upon summons. ED granted leave to continue with the ongoing investigation and to take action as per law.[Directorate of Enforcement v. Chanda Kochhar, PMLA Special Case No. 915 of 2020, decided on 30-01-2021]
Image Credits [Chandra Kochhar]: Business Standard