The Enforcement Directorate on Friday told the Supreme Court that it would not take any coercive action against former ICICI Bank Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Chanda Kochhar, who is facing charges of money laundering, reported PTI.
A three-judge bench headed by Justice SK Kaul was hearing a plea filed by Kochhar against the detention of her husband Deepak Kochhar, who has also been arrested under money laundering charges. The former ICICI Bank top boss claimed in her petition that her husband’s detention was “illegal” and pleaded for bail.
Noting that a regular bail plea filed by Deepak Kochhar is listed for hearing in a trial court on October 23, the top court said that the fresh plea will be heard next on October 27. The court also clarified that the pending case in the Supreme Court will have no bearing on the trial court’s proceedings.
To this, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Enforcement Directorate assured the court that no action would be taken against Chanda Kochhar.
Meanwhile, the former ICICI Bank chief executive filed a separate appeal against an order by the Bombay High Court that dismissed her petition against her sacking from the posts she held at the private lender, reported NDTV.
The Enforcement Directorate had filed a criminal case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act last year against Chanda Kochhar, her husband, and Videocon Group’s Managing Director Venugopal Dhoot. The investigation agency has also been probing at least two other instances of loans by ICICI Bank during Chanda Kochhar’s term. One of them was given to Gujarat-based pharmaceutical firm Sterling Biotech and another to Bhushan Steel Group.
Chanda Kochhar resigned in October 2018 after questions were raised about a Rs 3,250-crore loan that the bank had given the Videocon group in 2012. Six months after the loan was sanctioned, Dhoot allegedly provided crores of rupees to NuPower, a firm controlled by Deepak Kochhar.
Deepak Kochhar was arrested in the matter in September this year.