Deepak Kochhar, one of the prime accused in Videocon-ICICI loan fraud case, on Wednesday was remanded to Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) custody until September 19 by a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court in Mumbai.
Kochhar was produced in the court on Tuesday after the federal investigative agency arrested him on Monday night.
ED in its remand application said that in September 2009, ICICI Bank sanctioned loan of Rs 300 crore to Videocon International Electronics Ltd (VIEL), when his wife Chanda Kochhar, was the chairman of the sanctioning committee of ICICI Bank. VIEL is a subsidiary of Videocon group.
Soon after the bank disbursed the loan, VIEL transferred Rs 64 crore NuPower Renewables, managed, owned and controlled by the accused Deepak Kochhar, ED’s remand plea noted.
According to the agency, “Kochhar is not co-operating in the investigation, despite being presented crucial aspects of funds and money trails, and therefore custodial investigation is necessary.”
While issuing the remand order, the court observed, “There is voluminous record to be investigated and therefore custody is necessary. It is an economic offense that requires certain different types of investigation.”
However, during the hearing, Kochhar’s counsel said, “It is an illegal detention and it is not the case of money laundering.” He further argued that the accused had joined the investigation nearly 12 times and had also submitted relevant documents.
The court rejected Kochhar’s plea seeking a meeting with family members. However, he has been allowed to meet his lawyers, during custody, for 15 minutes, each after giving prior intimation to the investigative officer.
Sources said Kochhar's family members are likely to be called for questioning this week.
Both, Central Bureau of Investigation and ED, are probing six loans worth Rs 1,875 crore which were sanctioned to the Videocon Group and companies associated with it between June 2009 and October 2011 for alleged quid pro who.
It was alleged that ICICI Bank, under Chanda Kochhar's supervision, sanctioned credit of Rs 3,250 crore to several firms belonging to Videocon Group and other corporates.