New Delhi: Private sector lender ICICI Bank has warned investors that the ongoing investigations into allegations relating to its CEO Chanda Kochhar are risk factors for the bank as it faces reputation risk and regulatory action, The Times of India reported. ICICI Bank has filed its annual report on Monday for both Indian and international investors.
In its US filing, the country’s largest private-sector lender informed the regulator, “We have recently experienced negative publicity with respect to the allegations levelled against Ms Kochhar and her spouse leading up to her leave of absence,” the TOI report said.
ICICI Bank in its annual report has said that its audit committee has instituted an independent enquiry, headed by a former Supreme Court judge BN Srikrishna, to consider various allegations relating to Kochhar.
It can be noted that a whistleblower had written to the PMO alleging that Kochhar twisted the bank’s lending norms to extend Rs 3,250 crore loan to the Videocon group in 2010, which is now has become a dud asset. The letter also alleged that the now bankrupt group has then offered a quid pro quo to her husband Deepak Kochhar.
ICICI Bank further added that the “SEBI issued a show-cause notice to Ms. Kochhar and to the Bank in May 2018 related to the allegations. The Bank is in the process of responding to the relevant allegations in the notice which pertain to the Bank.”
The bank in May had asked Kochhar to go on on leave till an external enquiry into her alleged malafide actions favouring Videocon group and the companies of her husband was completed.
Meanwhile, in another filing to the exchanges, ICIC Bank has said that the RBI has approved the appointment of Sandeep Bakhshi as chief operating officer reporting to the board of the bank.