Incidentally, the CBI had filed an FIR against the accused in 2019. In the FIR, Kochhar and Dhoot are named as prime accused in the loan fraud case. Along with this, a case was filed under the ‘Prevention of Corruption Act’ against Deepak Kochhar’s companies Nupower Renewables (NRL), Supreme Energy Private Limited (SEPL), Videocon International Electronics Ltd (VIEL) and Videocon Industries Limited for criminal conspiracy.
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The CBI claimed that between June 2009 and October 2011, ICICI Bank sanctioned a total of 6 loans. A flat was also given in the name of Kochhar’s family trust, the CBI claimed. The flat was valued at Rs 5.25 crore in 1996. But in 2016, the same flat was given to the Kochhars for just Rs 11 lakh, CBI alleged.
The CBI said in its written statement that as an employee of the bank, Chanda Kochhar had the responsibility to safeguard the bank funds. He (Chanda Kochhar) had to fulfill that responsibility according to the rules and regulations of ICICI Bank.
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But for not doing so, a case was filed against the Kochers under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
But can a private bank employee be prosecuted under the Prevention of Corruption Act? A question has been raised about this.
Some of the lawyers say, it can be done. Because, in this case, the judgment of a case filed in the Supreme Court in 2016 is significant. Where the Supreme Court held, section 2(c) under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 defines ‘public servant’. According to that definition, a person who by virtue of his office performs any duty involving public interest is called a ‘Public Servant’. In that respect, the managing director and top officials of private banks are also ‘public servants’. Keeping this argument in front, the CBI has filed a case against the Kochars.