Rotomac 'fraud' Rs 3695cr
Lucknow/New Delhi: The CBI on Monday accused Rotomac chairman and managing director Vikram Kothari of defrauding a consortium of banks of Rs 3,695 crore, the alleged swindle swelling more than four times the amount initially thought.
News agency PTI had on Sunday said the businessman had cheated some public sector banks of Rs 800 crore.
The new figure came up on a day CBI teams swooped down on establishments in Kanpur linked to Kothari in coordinated raids that confirmed the businessman had not left the country.
Kothari's lawyer Sharad Kumar Birla and an agency source both confirmed that the promoter of Rotomac Pens was questioned during the searches.
The searches came amid speculation that Kothari had left India like diamantaire Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, who are accused of defrauding Punjab National Bank of Rs 11,400 crore.
CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said Kothari and his family had cheated the consortium of banks led by Bank of Baroda of Rs 3,695 crore, including the interest component, since 2008 onwards.
"They cheated the banks by siphoning off bank loans credited to Rotomac Global Pvt Ltd. The credit sanctioned and disbursed to the company was utilised for purposes other than the intended purpose for which the loan was given," the spokesperson said.
"They created several fictitious and front companies for carrying out transactions and submitted forged documents to induce banks for getting loans," Dayal said.
The agency has booked Kothari, his wife Sadhna and son Rahul.
The Enforcement Directorate has registered a case against Kothari and his family under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
The loans the family is alleged to have defaulted on include Rs 754.77 crore (Bank of India), Rs 456.63 crore (Bank of Baroda), Rs 771.07 crore (Indian Overseas Bank), Rs 458.95 crore (Union Bank of India), Rs 330.68 crore (Allahabad Bank), Rs 49.82 crore (Bank of Maharashtra) and Rs 97.47 crore (Oriental Bank of Commerce).
Kothari denied having swindled the banks. "I took a loan from the banks but it is wrong information that I haven't paid," he told reporters.
The businessman, seen at a wedding reception on Sunday night, also said he had no intention of leaving the country. "I live in India and continue to live here. There is no country better than India. I am not going to run away anywhere," he said.
In Kanpur, CBI teams reached Kothari's residence, offices and factories in Dadaganj, Panki, Swaroop Nagar and Mall around 3am. Agency sources said Bank of Baroda had tipped off the agency about the alleged fraud on Sunday night.
The bank had declared Kothari a wilful defaulter in 2017.