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Opinion

ICICI bank fraud: court rejects bail to Deepak Kochhar

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A special court on Tuesday denied bail to Deepak Kochhar, husband of former ICICI Bank managing director Chanda Kochhar, in connection with the money laundering case against him.

Their lawyers cited a recent order from the Adjudicating Authority of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act that refused to confirm the seizure of the apartment owned by the couple, saying it was not the proceeds of crime. In this context, Deepak Kochhar claimed that there was no evidence of money laundering against him.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) opposed the statement and stated that the Authority’s order has nothing to do with the proceedings before the court. In any event, the agency said, they were in the process of challenging the order.

ED said that between June 2009 and October 2011, ICICI Bank approved six high-value loans to various companies in the Videocon Group. In August 2009, Videocon International Electronics Ltd (VIEL) made a Rs 300 million term loan (RTL) in contravention of bank policy and rules.

Read also | PMLA adjudicating authority dismisses Kochhars asset seizure

“According to the structure created by / according to the instructions of the accused [Deepak Virendra Kochhar], part of the amount that was borrowed by VIEL from ICICI Bank with an interest liability of more than 12% per annum was paid / transferred to NRPL without any collateral and without any interest payable on them. This amount of Rs 64 crore is proceeds of crime that is transferred by Videocon Group / Mr. VN Dhoot to NRPL, a company owned and controlled by Deepak Kochhar, ”the ED said in its response.

“The aforementioned Rs64 crore amount has been used to purchase properties [Wind farm projects of 33.15 MW capacity]. “ED said that the proceeds of crime amounting to Rs 64 crore was not intended to be returned to VIL.” … because Videocon Group’s company is M / s Real Cleantech Private Limited [RCPL, which was part of structure created for holding the proceeds of crime], was allowed silent death, that is, it was canceled in 2018 and the link for the return of funds to Videocon Group was broken. “

ED said the apartment located in CCI Chambers acquired by the Chanda Kochhar family trust of Videocon Group for a minuscule amount is also part of the proceeds of crime. Chanda Kochhar and the defendant were associated with Mr. VN Dhoot / Videocon Group from 1994-95. The defendant floated M / s Vikvin Finance Private Limited (VFPL) with his mother [Late Mrs. Vinodini Kochhar] on 03.18.1992, which was later renamed M / s Credential Finance Limited (CFL) on 09.27.1994, ”said the agency.

He added that Chanda Kochhar received 1,890 CFL shares in 1993. “In addition, in 1994-1995, Dhoot through M / s Videocon International Limited, had also invested approximately Rs 10 million in CFL. The flat was CFL’s asset and was bought after Dhoot’s investment. “

The agency said that in 2016, through several layered transactions, the flat was transferred to the Chanda Kochhar family trust set up by her mother for the benefit of her children and Deepak Kochhar is her trustee.

Deepak Kochhar previously requested bail saying that the DE had not filed a charge sheet against him within the stipulated 60 days of his arrest. Therefore, he argued that he had the right to be released on bail. The special court rejected the argument last month.

Original source

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