CBI investigating videocon, husband of ICICI Bank CEO in loan case

Vastavam web: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has launched a preliminary investigation into the husband of ICICI Bank’s chief executive, as well as officials at the lender and at Videocon Group, two sources said on Saturday, to assess whether there was any wrongdoing in lending practices.Reports in many Indian media outlets in the past week have alleged that Videocon Group chairman Venugopal Dhoot invested 640 million rupees ($9.83 million) in Nu Power Renewables, a firm owned by Deepak Kochhar, the husband of ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar, after Videocon secured a loan from a consortium of banks, including ICICI.

The CBI launched a preliminary inquiry about two months ago to assess whether “nepotism” or “criminality” were involved, the two sources told Reuters, declining to be named. The investigation was ongoing, one source said.In 2012, a consortium of more than 20 banks and other financial institutions approved loans of 400 billion rupees ($6.14 billion) to Videocon for debt consolidation, and an oil and gas capital expenditure programme.Of this, ICICI Bank provided 32.5 billion rupees after its own credit panel approved the loan, ICICI Bank said in a statement earlier this week, that it was “important to note that Ms. Chanda Kochhar was not the chairperson of this committee”.