Mallya, Nirav Modi and now Chanda Kochar: India’s economic elite are fast becoming the most corrupt and unaccountable section of the society. Widespread economic looting, carefully planned frauds, mis-utilization of collective resources and exploitation of people’s money is no longer a rarity. Business and power connections nurtured by an infrastructure of elitist preferences reduce the national economy into the copyright of a chosen few. How long will the common masses be misguided? Is governmental responsibility a myth?
ICICI Bank CEO Chanda kochar has been alleged of favouring Videocon Group in its lending practices. Multiple reports spread in India last week, referring to an alleged conflict of interest in ICICI’s lending to Videocon, asserting that the conglomerate was favoured by the bank’s CEO.
It was in 2008 that the CEO’s husband set up a company in collaboration with Videocon involving many other relatives. This company got a loan of Rs 64 crore. Subsequently a trust took over the company for just Rs 9 lakh. The news has come at a moment when the Indian banking sector under scrutiny after the Punjab National Bank said last month that it had unearthed a fraud worth 2 million dollars.
The data has come at a moment when Indian banks are finding it difficult to tackle problems of record.Nirav Modi has been found to cause a fraud of 1.8 billion dollar. The businessman and his relative Mehul Choksi together with many employess of the PNB bank have been held accountable for the fraud. CBI has arrested nearly 14 people but the two main guilty are not arrested now.
The owner of Kingfisher Vijay Mallya has been involved in loan defaults of a total of Rs 9,000 crore. The CBI’s investigation is on in this matter but Mallya has left the country. It is known that Mallya is in the UK and has refused to turn up before the courts.
These are few of the names that have been revealed. Maybe some more shall join this brigade. Can we afford to ignore them? Is public accountability nothing apart from a mockery?