On Monday, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) booked BSP MLA Vinay Shankar Tiwari and his wife Rita Tiwari for their involvement in an alleged bank fraud of Rs.750 crore. Several teams conducted searches at premises linked to Tiwari at Gorakhpur, Lucknow, and Noida. Tiwari is the son of former minister and strongman Hari Shankar Tiwari. Tiwari is the sitting MLA from Chillupar, Gorakhpur.
Statement by CBI
In a press statement, the CBI said they had registered a case on a complaint from Bank of India against two private companies named Gangotri Enterprises and Royal Empire Marketing based at Lucknow and Noida, Uttar Pradesh. The directors and unknown others have been named for alleged misappropriation, cheating, and causing loss of Rs. 754.24 crore (approx.) to the consortium of banks. Ajit Pandey, the director of the company Gangotri Enterprises has also been booked.
The private company (Gangotri Enterprises) is involved in the construction of roads, bridges and flyovers. It availed credit from a consortium of banks led by Bank of India. The company did not route the transactions through Trust and Retention Account as per the regulations. There were irregularities in their financial statements. “Searches were conducted today at the premises of the accused/company at Noida and Lucknow which led to recovery of several incriminating documents,” it further added.
CBI has said that bank officials who cleared the loans will be called for questioning.
A forensic audit revealed diversion of money
As per the reports, the FIR stated that the company took loans worth Rs.1129.44 crore between 2007 and 2012. In 2015 it was declared NPA. In July 2019, the Debt Recovery Tribunal had summoned Tiwari and 33 others after banks complained about loans turning into NPA. In a forensic audit done by the Bank of India, it was found that the loan money was diverted through investments and unsecured loans to related parties and entities. The bank declared the account as a fraud and reported it to RBI and CBI.