CBI books ship-building company in 22,842 Cr loan fraudtext_fields
New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has booked a ship-building company in Gujarat and its board of directors for a loan fraud amounting to Rs 22,842 crore, The Indian Express reported.
The ABG Shipyard Ltd (ABGSL), its ex-chairman and managing director Rishi Kamlesh Agarwal, executive director Santhanam Muthaswamy, directors Ashwini Kumar, Sushil Kumar Agarwal and Ravi Vimal Nevetia were those booked by CBI, under a complaint filed by State Bank of India in 2019.
The agency has named another company, ABG International Pvt Ltd, in the case for alleged criminal conspiracy, cheating, criminal breach of trust and abuse of official position- charges under IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act.
As per the case, ABG Shipyard had diverted loan funds through branches in Singapore as well as other means from 2012 to 2017. The loan got declared as NPA in July 2016, and the company is under National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) proceedings.
After CBI registered the case, it conducted raids in 13 places, including premises related to ABGSL and its directors in Surat, Bharuch, Mumbai and Pune. The probe agency said in a statement that the company cheated a consortium of 28 banks, including State Bank of Patiala, Commercial Finance Branch, New Delhi; State Bank of Travancore, Commercial Branch, New Delhi; State Bank of India, Overseas Branch, Mumbai which were led by ICICI Bank.
CBI said that ABG Group was a major shipbuilder in India. Its shipyards were in at Dahej and Surat in Gujarat, and it had the capacity to build ships up to 1,20,000 deadweight tonnage and 18,000 deadweight tonnage in respective yards.
The company had fallen into depression after the global crisis in the shipping industry as commodity demand and prices fell. But CBI also found through an audit of its financials that fraudulent practices were going on in the company.