PNB Scam: ICICI Chanda Kochhar and Axis Bank Shikha Sharma Summoned

Diamond merchant Nirav Modi. Credit Facebook  Nirav Modi

A consortium of 31 banks led by ICICI Bank has loans close to Rs 5,200 crore to Mehul Chokshi's Gitanjali Group.

"ICICI Bank has no exposure to the Nirav Modi group of companies, nor has it issued any Letter of Undertaking; nor has any buyers credit exposure against LOUs with respect to the Nirav Modi group of companies as well as the Gitanjali group of companies", the ICICI Bank response said.

A special court on Saturday had issued non-bailable warrants (NBWs) against Modi and Choksi in the alleged scam.

Prior, a senior authority of the ICICI Bank was summoned to the CBI office in Mumbai.

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"The SFIO will now likely send a more detailed questionnaire to banks asking for more information and since there are 31banks involved, it is likely that the process of collecting information itself will take a few months", said a person aware of the investigation. Its exposure to the Gitanjali group, it said, is not the largest among the lenders in the consortium.

Axis Bank clarified that it was not the leading bank in the consortium. As per PTI, V Srinivasan, Deputy Managing Director of Axis Bank was seen coming out of the SFIO office in Mumbai on Tuesday.

Before this, CBI has detained Vipul Chitalia, the Vice President of Gitanjali Group of Companies, as a part of its probe into the PBN scam. The reports said Kochhar was questioned on Sunday and Monday as well.

"In the normal course of trade business, the bank, through the overseas branches, undertakes transactions against LoUs (Letters of Undertaking) issued by other banks". He didn't unveil some other insights about Chitalia's affirmed part in the PNB misrepresentation.

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It is claimed that firms colluded with officials at a city branch of state-run Punjab National Bank to clear letters of undertakings without proper diligence, resulting in the scam.

The officials of PNB scam were sent through an global messaging system for banking called SWIFT.

In case of default, the bank issuing the LoU has to pay the liability to the credit giving bank along with accruing interest.

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