CBI books Ratul Puri, former Moser Baer executives in bank fraud case

Kamal Nath's nephew Ratul Puri has been booked in case of alleged bank fraud involving Moser Baer.

Published: 19th August 2019 12:52 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th August 2019 12:52 AM   |  A+A-

Ratul Puri

Ratul Puri (Photo | ANI/Twitter)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The CBI has booked Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath's nephew Ratul Puri, who formerly served as executive director of Moser Baer, and others in connection with a Rs-354 crore bank fraud case filed by Central Bank of India, officials said on Sunday.

Besides Ratul, his father and Managing Director Deepak Puri, mother and Director Nita Puri (Kamal Nath's sister), and other Directors Sanjay Jain and Vineet Sharma have been booked, along with the company, Moser Baer India Limited (MBIL), they said.

They have been booked alleged for criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery and corruption, the officials said.

Ratul had resigned from the post of executive director in 2012, while his parents continue to be on the board, the bank has said in its complaint to the CBI, which is now part of the FIR.

Request seeking comments from Puri's lawyer remained unanswered.

After registering the FIR, the agency carried out searches at six locations in the national capital including the office of Moser Baer in Okhla Industrial Area and residence of Puris in New Friends Colony.

The company is involved in the manufacture of optical storage media like compact discs, DVDs, solid state storage devices. The firm started getting credit facilities from the bank from 2009, the bank has said.

The bank has alleged that the company has taken various types of credit facilities worth about Rs 1,962 crore from different banks over the period.

The Central Bank of India had extended credit facilities to the tune of over Rs 332 crore to the company till November, 2011.

Unable to pay its debt, the company sought restructuring of its debt under Corporate Debt Restructuring mechanism which was admitted in 2012 and debts were restructured, the bank said.

It further alleged that the company did not keep promises made under CDR following which the bank withdrew the accounts from it.

Consequently, the loan account was declared a non-performing asset on November 29, 2014, it said.

During the forensic audit, it emerged that the company had maintained accounts outside the consortium through which funds were being routed "indicating the fraudulent intentions for siphoning off" the money.

The company made substantial investments in subsidiaries with a total exposure of worth Rs 1,456 crore which were written off by it rather than making attempts to recover them, the bank alleged.

The company gave corporate guarantee of Rs 2051.87 crore on behalf of subsidiary firms without seeking permission from Central Bank of India, it said.

"This act of giving guarantees beyond the net worth and that too in disputed waters, without seeking permission from the complainant bank clearly points towards the intention of the accused to lure the lenders fraudulently into lending to its subsidiaries and there by exposed them to potential financial loss," the audit report cited by the bank in its complaint said. "...The MBIL has committed fraud and cheated the complainant bank thereby making a wrongful gain to themselves and a wrongful loss to the lender bank which is a custodian of public money," the complaint to the CBI said.

Primary security of the bank consisting of stock of finished goods, semi-finished goods and raw material have also been dishonestly and fraudulently removed by the company and its directors in order to prevent the distribution amongst the creditor banks to satisfy the debt, the bank has alleged.

"The funds granted by the banks have been misused and misappropriated by MBIL and its directors for their own personal use, MBIL and its Directors and promoters have also committed fraud in respect of reporting book debts, which were also one of the primary securities of the bank," it said.

The bank claimed that the company and its directors forged and fabricated documents to induce Central Bank of India to release funds, it said.

"MBIL has cause unlawful loss to our bank to the tune of Rs 354.51 crore as on November 29, 2014 and interest thereon by getting unlawful gains," the complaint said.

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