ICICI Bank denied a recent news report which claimed that the bank’s Managing Director and CEO Chanda Kochhar has been asked to go on a leave by the board due to her alleged allegations of favouring Videocon Group in a previous deal. The bank claimed that Kochhar has gone on a scheduled annual leave and not because of any directive by the bank’s board. The bank also said that there was no truth in news that board has appointed a search committee to recommend a successor to Kochhar.
ICICI, which is the largest private sector bank in India, had earlier said that it will institute an inquiry into the allegations raised by an anonymous whistle blower against its chief Chanda Kochhar. The bank is defending Kochhar in the alleged allegations of favouring Videocon Group in its lending practices.
The bank earlier said that a committee-headed by an independent person would examine the allegations against Kochhar and find out whether her actions violated the bank’s code of conduct or conflict of interest. Earlier, a notice was issued to the bank by Market regulator Sebi on the dealings of bank with Videocon Group and Nupower, an entity in which Chanda Kochhar’s husband Deepak Kochhar has economic interests in. ICICI had extended a loan of Rs. 3,250 crore to Videocon in 2012. CBI has launched a preliminary inquiry into the matter and the possible role of Deepak Kochhar in the deal.