Another PNB-Like Scam?
NEW DELHI: After billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi, industrialist Vikram Kothari, the promoter of Rotomac
Pens, has been charged by the CBI and is being raided. In a First Information Report (FIR) filed last night,
the agency has charged him with defaulting on loans worth Rs.800 crore.
Vikram Kothari is the Chairman and Managing Director at the Kanpur-based Rotomac Global Private
CBI sources say action against the billionaire followed a formal letter of complaint by the Bank of Baroda,
one of the banks from which Vikram Kothari had taken huge loans.
Vikram Kothari, his wife and son are being questioned by officials who started the searches around 4 am at three addresses in Kanpur.
Mr Kothari allegedly took loans worth more than Rs. 800 crore from five state-owned banks, Allahabad Bank, Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Indian Overseas Bank and Union Bank of India.
The case has emerged in the middle of a CBI investigation into the massive PNB scam in which bank officials helped Nirav Modi and others get credit from overseas banks using fake guarantees.
Nirav Modi and his family left the country in the first week of January, before the CBI started investigating the fraud.
Amid reports over the weekend that Vikram Kothari had also fled the country, he was spotted at a wedding on Sunday night.
In February 2017, Mr Kothari was declared a wilful defaulter for failing to repay the loans. However, he approached the Allahabad High Court against the order by the banks.
All through last year, various properties belonging to Mr Kothari and his family members were put up for auction by the banks to recover a part of their dues.
In the last decade, Rotomac emerged as a prominent pen brand that counted people like film star Salman Khan among its brand ambassadors.
Mr Kothari’s family also owns the popular pan masala brand – Pan Parag.
Lucknow: Vikram Kothari, chairman and MD of Rotomac Global Private Limited has been arrested, a few hours after he rubbished media reports claiming him to have left the country.
The businessman had taken a loan of more than Rs 800 crore from state-run banks and was defaulting in
paying them back.
On Sunday, media reports had claimed that Kothari had fled after his Mall Road office was found locked for a week.
In a statement, Kothari said, “First of all, it is not a scam. I am not going anywhere. I am an Indian citizen and am very much in my hometown. Though banks have declared my company as a non-performing asset (NPA), I am not a defaulter.
The matter is still sub judice with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). I am regularly in touch with the banks and am constantly cooperating with them.
I availed the loans and will repay them soon.”
As per sources, Kothari had taken a loan of more than Rs 800 crores from five government banks. Sources have confirmed that Allahabad Bank, Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Indian Overseas Bank and Union Bank
of India compromised their rules to render these loans to Kothari.
Allahabad Bank manager, Rajesh Gupta had said that if the party (Kothari) could not pay the loan, then the amount would be recovered by selling his properties.