NEW DELHI : The Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday said it had carried out searches at seven locations across multiple cities on November 24 in connection with the case of ABG Shipyard, said to be the biggest bank fraud case in the country.
According to the central agency, the searches were carried out under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 in Mumbai, Delhi and Pune.
The searches were conducted at the residences of the persons/family members related to ABG Shipyard Ltd and its related/group companies which resulted in the recovery and seizure of unaccounted cash, bullion and jewellery to the tune of approximately ₹5 crore.
The ED had initiated an investigation on the basis of a first information report (FIR) registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation last year against the company, accused of defrauding a consortium of banks led by ICICI Bank to the tune of ₹22,842 crore.
According to the ED probe, ABG Shipyard Ltd. and its group of companies allegedly availed various credit/loan facilities from the consortium of banks led by ICICI Bank for the purpose of working capital requirement and capital expenditure etc.
However, ABG Shipyard Ltd. and its group companies have utilised huge funds for purposes other than its stated use and diverted the same through various group companies incorporated in India and abroad, the ED statement said.
“ED investigation till now has resulted in provisional attachment of properties worth Rs.2,747.69 Crore (approx.). Prosecution Complaint has also been filed by the ED before the Ld. PMLA Court for offences of money laundering,” the statement added.
ABG Shipyard, the flagship company of the ABG is said to be one of India’s largest firms engaged in shipbuilding and ship repair. The shipyards are located in Dahej and Surat in Gujarat. The company is learnt to have constructed over 165 vessels, 46 for overseas customers, in the past 16 years, including specialised vessels like the newsprint carriers.