Press Trust of india

Videocon loan case: CBI questions Rajiv Kochhar, Mahesh Punglia

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New Delhi, Apr 7 :   The CBI today questioned Mahesh Chandra Punglia, closely associated with Videocon group in connection with ICICI banks Rs 3,250 crore loan to the Group in 2012, as the examination of Rajiv Kochhar, ICICI Bank MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar’s brother-in-law, continued for the third day today, officials said here.

The officials said Punglia was examined over allegations in the preliminary enquiry related to the ICICI-Videocon loan case. He was an employee of Videocon and then used to offer consultancy services to the group.

He was also a Director in the NuPower Renewables Pvt Ltd, the company founded by Deepak Kochhar, Chanda Kochhar’s husband and Rajiv’s brother, they said.

Rajiv Kochhar, the founder of the Singapore-based Avista Advisory, appeared at the agency’s office in the Bandra Kurla Complex in Mumbai in the morning where he was asked about the role of his company in the “restructuring” of the loan, the officials said.

He was asked about the help he extended to Videocon in relation to the loan from the ICICI Bank which was part of a Rs 400-billion credit given by a consortium of 20 banks to the group of Venugopal Dhoot.

He was detained at the Mumbai airport on Thursday as he was trying to board a flight for a South East Asian country, on the request of the CBI, they said.

The deal recently made news after reports questioned the loan and linked it to a possible quid pro quo that Dhoot allegedly had with NuPower Renewables.

The CBI has registered a preliminary enquiry against Videocon founder Venugopal Dhoot and Deepak Kocchar and unidentified others, they said.

A preliminary inquiry is the first step by the CBI to gather information about the allegations. If the agency is convinced there exists prima facie material in the matter, it may register a regular case against the accused.

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