Chanda Kochhar pulls out of FICCI event as Videocon loan probe intensifies

Chanda Kochhar pulls out of FICCI event as Videocon loan probe intensifies

Chanda Kochhar pulls out of FICCI event as Videocon loan probe intensifies

Deepak Kochhar, CEO and co-founder of NuPower Renewables and the husband of ICICI bank Managing Director Chanda Kochhar, has been issued a notice by the Income Tax Department over the alleged tax evasion. The bank clarified that the meeting was pre-scheduled and that the board had been meeting regularly in the first week of April in the previous years too, to review the progress the in resolution of large accounts.

However, the bank did not say anything with regard to review of insolvency cases which was part of board meeting agenda for today.

An ICICI Bank shareholder, Arvind Gupta, wrote to the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and all investigating agencies accusing the Kochhars of wrongful gains from loans sanctioned to Videocon in 2012.

ICICI Bank Board met on Monday to take stock of various cases at National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) involving the lender.

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"Venugopal Dhoot transferred money from Videocon Group to Supreme Energy, in which he had 90 percent shares".

NuPower Renewables is an independent power producer in the renewable energy sector and has almost 700 MW of renewable energy assets operating and in pipeline located across Tamilnadu, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh & Madhya Pradesh. The deal recently made news after reports questioned the loan and linked it to a possible quid pro quo that Videocon group promoter Venugopal Dhoot allegedly had with NuPower Renewables, a company founded by Deepak Kochchar.

Asked about the alleged Rs 64 crore loan given to Nupower by Supreme Energy which is "99.99 percent owned by him", Dhoot initially claimed Videocon does not have any such entity, but then conceded that the Group may have invested "a lakh or two" in some company, but claimed he does not exactly remember. The ICICI received another jolt after the RBI last week imposed a penalty of Rs 58.9 crore on it for violating the central bank's guidelines governing treasury operations, one of the heaviest monetary levies by a regulator on a bank for violation of regulations in recent years.

According to the whistleblower's letter, ICICI Bank extended loans to the tune of Rs 3,250 to various private companies belonging to Videocon Industries. It also reduced its holding in Bank Of New York Mellon Corp (NYSE:BK) by 11,300 shares in the quarter, leaving it with 39,191 shares, and cut its stake in Johnson And Johnson (NYSE:JNJ).

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ICICI Bank shares were among the biggest losers on the indices.

On BSE, the stock fell 7% to Rs 258.90 while it slumped 7% to Rs 258.80 on NSE.

Shares of ICICI Bank stock traded up $0.14 during trading on Friday, reaching $8.85.

In the NY premarket, ICICI shares were recently sliding 7.6%. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded ICICI Bank from a "buy" rating to a "hold" rating in a report on Wednesday, March 7th.

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