Reliance Group chairman Anil Ambani on Thursday appeared for questioning before the Enforcement Directorate in Mumbai in connection with a money laundering case into the crisis-hit Yes Bank, reported PTI. Ambani received the summons from the agency on Monday.
Ambani’s statement will reportedly be recorded under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. The businessman’s nine group companies are considered to have taken loans of about Rs 12,800 crore from the bank. The loans were reportedly under “stress”.
Last week, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said Ambani’s Reliance Group was among the 10 large stressed corporate groups that had borrowed from Yes Bank accounting to bad loans worth Rs 34,000 crore. The Reliance Group, along with Essel, ILFS, DHFL and Vodafone have the biggest share of the loans, she added. Earlier this month, the Reserve Bank of India had placed Yes Bank under a moratorium and took over its board.
However, in a statement in the same week, Ambani clarified that all the loans Reliance had taken from crisis-hit Yes Bank were “fully secured” and had been taken out in the ordinary course of business. The company added it has no “direct or indirect exposure” to Kapoor or any entities controlled by his family, and that it is committed to honouring all loan repayments.
Authorities have initiated investigations into Yes Bank’s lending practices that led to its failure. On March 8, the bank’s founder Rana Kapoor was taken into Enforcement Directorate’s custody under money laundering charges. On Monday, Kapoor’s custody with the Enforcement Directorate was extended till March 20. Kapoor and his family members are accused of laundering proceeds of crime worth Rs 4,300 crore by allegedly receiving kickbacks for extending big loans through Yes Bank, which later turned non-performing.
Under the Yes Bank reconstruction scheme, State Bank of India and seven financial institutions, including private sector lenders, have infused around Rs 10,000 crore in the bank.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, Yes Bank resumed its services as the moratorium imposed on it by the Reserve Bank of India ended at 6 pm after 13 days.