ICICI Bank has replied to the market’s regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (SEBI) showcause notices with respect to an investigation into the non-disclosure of the alleged ‘conflict of interest’ in the loans disbursed to the Videocon Group.
The information was provided by SEBI chairman Ajay Tyagi at a press conference after a board meeting of the markets regulator on Tuesday.
An ICICI Bank spokesperson clarified late in the evening, “We have submitted our response to the show cause notice issued by SEBI. We would like to clarify that we have not filed any application for settlement.”
In May, SEBI had issued showcause notices to Chanda Kochhar, managing director and chief executive officer and ICICI Bank alleging violation of the Listing Obligation and Disclosure Requirements (LODR). SEBI’s preliminary examination favoured initiating adjudication proceedings against ICICI Bank and Chanda Kochhar for violation of disclosure norms regarding ‘conflict of interest’ in the business dealings with Deepak Kochhar, promoter of NuPower Renewables and the Videocon Group.
ICICI Bank has so far supported Chanda Kochhar completely and maintained that there has been no regulatory violation on their part ever since the matter came to light in March 2018. Currently, Chanda Kochhar is on leave while the bank investigates the matter internally. The independent probe is being led by Justice B.N.Srikrishna. Last month, Kochhar was re-appointed to the board of ICICI Securities.
Chanda Kochhar, who has been on an indefinite leave from June 19, was not present at the bank’s board meeting last week. Sandeep Bakhshi, chief operating officer of ICICI Bank addressed the AGM and urged shareholders to wait for the outcome of the Srikrishna committee probe.
“In the meanwhile, I can assure shareholders that we have ring-fenced the bank functioning from this event. As a bank, we are putting our best foot forward and maximise the opportunity and serve the society with the highest standards of governance,” Bakhshi said.