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Gujarat firm’s promoters held in Rs 2654 crore bank fraud

Statesman News Service | New Delhi |

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Wednesday arrested the promotor-founder, managing director and joint managing director of a Vadodara-based firm for allegedly defrauding a consortium of 11 banks, public as well as private, of Rs 2654.40 crore.

The CBI identified the accused promoters and directors of this firm, Diamond Power Infrastructure Limited, as Suresh Narain Bhatnagar and his sons, Amit and Sumit, and produced them before a CBI court in Ahmedabad. The Gujarat company manufactures cables and other electrical equipment.

A case was registered against them under various Indial Penal Code (IPC) sections of cheating and conspiracy, along with sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

It was alleged that they had, in collusion with officials from various banks, had cheated the banks of Rs 2654.40 crore through falsification of accounts, creation of false documents and forgery of records.

The firm allegedly availed fraudulently credit facilities from a consortium of 11 banks since 2008, with an outstanding amount of Rs 2654.40 crore as on 29 June 2016. It was declared a non-performing asset in 2016-17.

These banks included Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, ICICI Bank, Allahabad Bank, Axis Bank, Dena Bank, SBI, IOB, IFCI, Exim Bank, Corporation Bank and other financial institutions.

The Bank of India, which reportedly tops this list with Rs 670.51 crore loan exposure to the accused firm, is followed by Bank of Baroda (Rs 348.99 crore), ICICI Bank (Rs 279.46 crore), SBI (Rs 266.37 crore), Axis Bank (Rs 255.32 crore), Allahabad Bank (Rs 227.96 crore), Dena Bank (Rs 177.19 crore), Corporation Bank (109.12 crore), Exim Bank (Rs 81.92 crore), IOB (Rs 71.59 crore) and the IFCI Bank (58.53 crore).