Coming to the defence of its CEO Chanda Kochhar, ICICI Bank Chairman M K Sharma on Thursday said the board has full confidence in her and ruled out any quid pro quo as alleged with regard to a certain loan given to Videocon group.
This is the second time in two days that the bank has come in support of Kochhar after reports of involvement of her and family members in a loan provided to Videocon group.
Sharma said the bank reviewed its internal processes for credit approval and found them to be robust.
“The board has come to the conclusion that there is no question of any quid pro quo/ nepotism/ conflict of interest as is being alleged in various rumours,” he told reporters.
He did not take any questions at the press meet.
Regarding exposure to the group, he said the bank’s current exposure is a part of the syndicated consortium arrangement.
Certain reports mentioned about alleged involvement of Kochhar and her family members in a loan provided to Videocon group on quid pro quo basis. It was also pointed out that a complaint had been forwarded to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and others for necessary action against Kochhar.
Concerns were also raised about transactions of Videocon group and NUPower Renewables, a company operated by her husband Deepak Kochhar.
“The board has come to the conclusion that there is no question of any quid pro quo/ nepotism/ conflict of interest as is being alleged in various rumours.
“The board has full confidence and reposes full faith in the bank’s MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar,” he said.
He also said that rumours are being spread to malign the bank and its top management.
“ICICI Bank was not the lead bank for this consortium and the bank only sanctioned its share of facilities aggregating approximately Rs 3,250 crore which was less than 10 per cent of the total consortium facility in April 2012,” he added.
He said similar rumours surfaced in mid-2016 and the bank had appropriately responded to them.
As the same rumours have resurfaced again the board reviewed the internal processes and also the details of the exposure to the Videocon group, he said, adding, “It can be concluded that there are adequate checks and balances in loan appraisal, rating and approval processes within the bank, both from the control as well as from a governance perspective.”
The bank clarified that none of the investors of NuPower Renewables are borrowers of ICICI Bank.