IT Dept sends notice to Deepak Kochhar’s NuPower Renewables

New Delhi : Amid the ongoing controversy regarding a Rs.3,250 loan sanctioned by ICICI Bank to Videocon Group, the Income Tax (IT) Department on Tuesday sent a notice to NuPower Renewables, owned by the private lender’s CEO Chanda Kochhar’s husband Deepak.

Sources from the department told ANI that the notice was sent to Deepak Kochhar’s firm after week-long investigation, as per provisions of Section 131 of the Income Tax Act, which empowers IT authorities to conduct inquiries, summon persons / witnesses, examine them under oath, compel production of books of account and documents, and issue commissions.

For the unversed, media reports earlier this month highlighted an alleged involvement of Chanda Kochhar and her family members in a loan provided to Videocon group on quid pro quo basis.

Indian Investors Protection Council Trustee Arvind Gupta said the evidence in the case pointed out that Chanda Kochhar was herself a beneficiary of the loan, and said her husband Deepak Kochhar is an indirect beneficiary of the loan granted to Videocon.

“Venugopal Dhoot transferred money from Videocon Group to Supreme Energy, in which he had 90 percent shares. He promoted it and later transferred it to Deepak Kochhar. Deepak Kochhar then transferred his shareholdings to Pinnacle Energy. Pinnacle Energy was a trust formed by Kochhar family. Now they are saying they sold their shares of Nupower Renewables much before. NuPower Renewables was special purpose vehicle made to revert allegations in future. ICICI never gave it loan, but company was benefited,” Gupta told ANI.

Meanwhile, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has also questioned few ICICI Bank officials as part of a preliminary enquiry to find if any quid pro quo was involved in the bank’s issuance of Rs. 3,250-crore loan to the Videocon Group in 2012. (ANI)