BSE chairman among those named in CBI FIR for Rs 6-billion loan fraud

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The CBI on Friday searched the residences of six former and current officials of IDBI Bank in connection with an alleged Rs 6 billion loan fraud case in which BSE Chairman S Ravi and the heads of two public sector banks have also been booked, officials said New Delhi.

The officials whose residences were searched today included Amita Narayan, the then CGM of the credit committee of the bank; R K Bansal, then member of the credit committee; S K Srinivasan, the then executive director; R S Vidyasagar, regional head ICG of IDBI; Bharat Pal Singh, then deputy managing director, and Medha Joshi, the head of the Risk unit.

In an FIR registered based on a complaint from the Central Vigilance Commission, the CBI has named 15 IDBI Bank officials who worked at senior levels between 2010 and 2014 when loans were sanctioned to the companies controlled by former Aircel promoter C Sivasankaran, they said.

Managing Director and CEO of Indian Bank Kishor Kharat, who was then the MD and CEO of IDBI Bank, his counterpart in Syndicate Bank Melwyn Rego (then deputy managing director in IDBI Bank), and then chairman-cum-managing director of IDBI Bank M S Raghavan have been named in the FIR.

Also named in the FIR is S Ravi, the Chairman of the Bombay Stock Exchange, who is also an independent director on the board of IDBI bank.

The sources said his residence was also searched during the agency’s operation that started on Wednesday night. “He is also the Chairman of IDBI Bank’s Audit Committee,” according to his bio data on the website of the BSE.

The officials said the agency would soon question all the accused named in the FIR including Ravi, Rego, Kharat, and Raghavan.

“It was also alleged that the loans were granted to the companies by IDBI Bank at its highest decision-making level comprising the senior most management and even independent directors, disregarding the existing guidelines, instructions, and procedures,” CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said.

Subsequently, various conditions were relaxed or all together ignored. This led to an alleged loss of approximately Rs 6 billion to the bank and the public exchequer, he said.

The case pertains to loans of Rs 322 crore and Rs 523 crore given to the companies of Sivasankaran, who was at the centre of Aircel Maxis probe for alleging that then Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran had put pressure on him to sell his company to a Malaysian telecom tycoon, a case in which Maran brothers have been discharged by a special court.

The loans later turned non-performing assets or NPAs and the total outstanding on the companies is over Rs 600 crore which is a loss to the exchequer.

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