Review appointment of Kamath as head of loan rejig panel: AIBEA to RBI

The All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) has expressed its opposition to the appointment of ICICI Banks former CEO and non Executive Chairman K.V.Kamath as the Head of the Expert Committee on Resolution Framework for Covid19-related Stress as his name figures in a CBI First Information Report (FIR).

The AIBEA in a letter to Shaktikanta Das, Governor, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Sunday said as per media reports Kamath’s name figures in the FIR lodged by Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the infamous nepotism scandal in ICICI Bank involving its former chief Chanda Kochar for sanctioning loan of over Rs 3,000 crore to Videocon group.

“It is reported that besides being the former CEO and non-Executive Chairman of ICICI Bank, he was also a member of the Committee that approved the loan which have now become questionable and are under investigation.

“Hence we strongly feel that at this stage, making such a person as Chairman of this Expert Committee is avoidable and needs to be reviewed,” C.H.Venkatachalam, General Secretary, AIBEA told RBI Governor.

Venkatachalam also recalled the recommendation of Kamath led Task Force set up by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in 1999 on bank non-performing assets (NPA) to close Indian Bank and privatisation of State Bank of India and Bank of Baroda.

“AIBEA questioned the Committee and its recommendations as one of the member of that Committee himself was a bank loan defaulter,” Venkatachalam said.

“Today Indian Bank is one of the best run Banks and everyone also knows the growth and progress of SBI and Bank of Baroda under public sector,” he added.

On August 6, RBI announced the setting up of an Expert Committee on Resolution Framework for Covid19-related Stress, as a special window under the Prudential Framework on Resolution of Stressed Assets issued on June 7, 2019.

The Expert Committee headed by Kamath will make recommendations on the required financial parameters to be factored in the resolution plans, with sector specific benchmark ranges for such parameters.

The Expert Committee shall also undertake the process validation for the resolution plans to be implemented under this framework, without going into the commercial aspects, in respect of all accounts with aggregate exposure of Rs. 1,500 crore and above at the time of invocation.