CBI registers FIR against Loha Ispaat Ltd in Rs 1,017 cr bank fraud

They allegedly conspired to make unlawful gain with an objective to defraud the creditors, the SBI complaint, now part of the FIR, alleged

Press Trust of India New Delhi
CBI, Central Bureau of Investigation

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The CBI has registered an FIR against Loha Ispaat Limited and its then chairman-cum-managing director Rajesh Gaurishankar Poddar for allegedly duping an SBI-led consortium of banks of Rs 1017.93 crore, officials said Monday.

It is alleged that the then CMD and others entered into a conspiracy during 2012-2017 to cheat the State Bank of India (SBI) and other five consortium member banks -- Bank of India, Canara Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, Punjab National Bank and Bank of Maharashtra -- by way of availing working capital limit, term loan and NFB limits to the tune of Rs 812.07 crore (approx), the CBI said in a statement.

The action was initiated on a complaint from the SBI which alleged that Loha Ispaat and its director(s), guarantors and unknown others have siphoned the bank's funds by doing fictitious sale and purchase transactions with suspicious and non-existent entities.

They allegedly conspired to make unlawful gain with an objective to defraud the creditors, the SBI complaint, now part of the FIR, alleged.

The forensic audit showed that the company indulged in the concentration of sales to siphon off bank finance by fictitious trade modes and improper adjustment entries to accommodate fictitious accounting, it said.

The account of the company was declared NPA (non-performing asset) with effect from August 28, 2014 and later categorised as fraud by the Fraud Identification Committee of SBI in its meeting held on February 13, 2019, it said.

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It was further alleged that the accused, in pursuance of the conspiracy, cheated the SBI and other five consortium member banks by way of fictitious sale and purchase transactions and fudging of accounts and also siphoned off the funds resulting into non-payment of outstanding loans to the extent of Rs 1017.93 crore, the CBI said in its statement.

"Searches were conducted at nine places including at Delhi, Mumbai, Raigarh and Thane (Maharashtra) at the residential and official premises of the accused which led to recovery of incriminating documents/articles," a CBI spokesperson said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: May 15 2023 | 9:27 PM IST

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