The CBI has filed an FIR against IL&FS Transportation Network Limited (ITNL) and its then directors for allegedly
causing a loss of more than Rs 6,524 crore to a 19-bank consortium led by Canara Bank, officials said on Friday.
In its FIR, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has booked Mumbai-based ITNL and its directors Karunakaran Ramchand, Deepak Das Gupta, Mukund Gajanan Sapre and then chief financial officer (CFO) Dilip Lalchand Bhatia for alleged criminal conspiracy and cheating as well as under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The agency recently conducted searches in Delhi, Gurugram and Mumbai at the premises of the accused persons, the officials said.
It is alleged that the accused entered into a criminal conspiracy to cheat 19 banks under multiple banking arrangements (the Canara Bank being the largest lender).
The loan account was declared a non-performing asset (NPA) in 2018 and subsequently, categorised as "fraud" in 2021.
In its complaint to the CBI, which became the basis for the FIR, the Canara Bank has alleged that the accused misappropriated the sanctioned credit facilities through cheating, diversion of funds, circular transactions between related and sister concerns and misrepresentation of books of income and expenditures.
The bank in its complaint claimed that ITNL, a subsidiary of IL&FS, is the largest 'Built, Operate and Transfer' road asset owner in India and a market leader in the transport infrastructure sector having its presence in metro rail, city bus service and border check posts.
"For the said business, ITNL had availed various credit facilities under multipte banking arrangements. Canara Bank, being the largest lender, sanctioned a Term Loan of Rs 500 crore under Rupee Term Loan and External Commercial Borrowing (ECB) of USD 75 million (USD 25 million from Canara Bank, London Branch and USD 50 million from e-Syndicate Bank, London branch) to the borrower company," the complaint from Canara Bank alleged.
The bank claimed that the account started to become irregular and was subsequently put under forensic audit. The audit found that quarterly foreign exposures were not disclosed in the minutes of ITNL for Board of Directors for FY 2015-16 and 2017-18.
It showed potential violation of insider trading policy by one of the key managerial persons wherein it appears that one of them to be obtaining clearance for selling shares of ITNL, the bank alleged.
The audit also red-flagged potential diversion of funds, issues like taking fake and dummy competitive quotes from the sub-contractors, fake expenses on procurement of steel from a vendor which is registered as trader of tyres, among others.
The CBI has alleged that the accused caused a wrongful loss, amounting to Rs 6,524 crore, to the consortium and wrongfully enriched themselves.