Yes Bank crisis: ED summons Subhash Chandra, Anil Ambani, Gautam Thapar, Wadhawans
Mumbai/New Delhi, March 16, 2020
As the Yes Bank probe gathers momentum, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has now summoned all the large borrowers who were given loans by the Rana Kapoor-led management.
An ED official related to the probe told IANS: "The agency has summoned all the top borrowers of the Yes Bank from March 17 to March 21."
The official said the Wadhawans of Dewan Housing Finance Ltd (DHFL) will be summoned on Tuesday, former Jet Airways chairman Naresh Goyal and Essel Group's Subhash Chandra on March 18, Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani and Peter Kerkar of Cox & Kings on March 19, Sameer Gehlot of IndiaBulls on March 20 and Avantha Realty promoter Gautam Thapar on March 21.
The Essel Group through a statement confirmed that the ED has requested Subhash Chandra's presence on March 18, 2020, to make a statement on the information which is already available with them.
"Chandra will certainly be present to make the statement and will be more than happy to extend any support or co-operation requested by ED. The Group wishes to clarify that most of the credit facilities were availed for its infrastructure business and there is no debt on ZEEL, ZMCL, etc.," it said.
The Essel Group further said that the group also wishes to cite that all credit facilities availed were "fully secured".
"The Group has never made any transactions with Rana Kapoor or his family or for that matter any private entities controlled by them," it added.
Earlier in the day, ED summoned Anil Ambani for questioning on Monday. "But as he cited his health issues and asked for a fresh date, the ED asked him to appear before it on Thursday," an ED source said.
The ED official said that the agency has summoned the borrowers as part of its probe to investigate the stressed loans sanctioned during the tenure of Rana Kapoor.
Among the largest borrowers are Ambani from whom information, including loan details, terms and conditions and side agreements have been sought ahead of his appearance.
The official said that in the coming days, the ED is also set to summon entities like Vodafone Idea, IL&FS, CG Power among others.
The official said that besides the top bosses of these groups, the ED has also summoned other officials for questioning along with the documents related to the financial transactions.
Earlier this month, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said: "The exposure of Yes Bank to some of the very stressed corporates has been before 2014. These are public domain names and I am not violating any customer privacy... Anil Ambani (Group), Essel Group, DHFL, IL&FS (and) Vodafone are some of the very stressed corporates to whom Yes Bank has been exposed."
Reliance Group said last week that it had no direct or indirect exposure to the Kapoor family.
"The entire exposure to Yes Bank is fully secured and is transacted in the ordinary course of business, and we are committed to honour our repayments to Yes Bank," said the company.
Sources close to developments revealed that many top businessmen and industrialists who had exposure to Yes Bank will be called for questioning namely bosses of Essel Group, Vodafone Idea, DHFL Group, Omkar Realtors, IL & FS Radius Developers, Jet Airways, Cox & Kings, CG Power, and McLeod Russel, et al.
It is believed that GMR and GVK Group also may have exposure to the bank.The ED official further added that most of the big borrowers have defaulted and the loans have turned into bad debts.
"The management and promoters will be examined and questioned in the coming weeks," said the official.
The CBI and ED began a probe into short-term debentures of the DHFL in which Yes Bank invested Rs 3,700 crore from April to June 2018.
The probe is part of another investigation pertaining to Yes Bank's purchase of debentures from DHFL against which the company was granted loans totalling Rs 600 crore against a collateral security of around Rs 40 crore only.
The loan amount later turned into non-performing asset. It was alleged that DHFL's promoter Kapil Wadhawan simultaneously paid kickbacks totalling Rs 600 crore to the Kapoors in the form of a loan of a similar amount to DoIT Urban Ventures, a venture owned by Rana Kapoor's daughters -- Rakhee Kapoor Tandon, Roshni Kapoor and Radha Kapoor.
It was also alleged that Yes Bank did not initiate action to recover the loans extended to DHFL. The ED arrested Rana Kapoor on March 8 morning after several hours of questioning and he was been sent to ED custody till March 20.
One of Rana Kapoor's daughters was stopped from boarding a flight to London by Immigration Department officials at Mumbai airport.
The CBI on Friday registered a fresh case against Rana Kapoor, his wife Bindu Kapoor and Avantha Realty Promoter Gautam Thapar in a fresh case involving the crisis-hit bank.