NEW DELHI: The Central Bureau of Investigation has initiated a preliminary enquiry (PE) to probe alleged irregularities between Deepak Kochhar, the husband of ICICI Bank MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar, and the Videocon Group. The latter had availed Rs 3,250 crore loan from the bank, of which Rs 2,810 crore remained unpaid and was declared NPA in 2017.
ICICI Bank was part of a consortium of 20 banks that granted loan to the Venugopal Dhoot-led Group to the tune of Rs 40,000 crore. Meanwhile, markets regulator the Securities and Exchange Board of India has begun looking into the matter for any possible disclosure and corporate governance-related lapses.
Top CBI sources said the PE has named ICICI CEO Chanda Kochar’s husband Deepak Kochar, the Videocon Group and unknown officials. “However, the role of Chanda Kochar will also be examined if the enquiry leads to a nexus between the ICICI Bank’s grant of loan to Videocon Group and quid pro quo deals with her husband,” a CBI official said, adding that an FIR will be registered depending on the evidence gathered during the enquiry.
The PE was initiated on the basis of source information and CBI’s own Intelligence. Through the PE, the agency will enquire into the series of alleged transactions between Deepak Kochar and Videocon Group and any relation thereof with grant of loans to the Group by ICICI, the sources said.
The CBI officials enquiring into the issue claimed that the PE was registered some time ago and had nothing to do with recent media reports on deals between Deepak Kochar and the Videocon Group and the grant of a loan by ICICI to the Venugopal Dhoot-led Group.