Kingfisher Airlines Ltd - CBI to probe if netas pushed Mallya loans - ECOTIM

Sunday, 13 Mar 2016 

Kingfisher Airlines Ltd:The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) will probe if some public sector banks were pressured into lending and restructuring loans extended to the now defunct Kingfisher Airlines. - RTRS.On a day when Vijay Mallya did not respond to an email from Enforcement Directorate asking him to appear before it on March 18 even as his close associate Ravi Nedungadi evaded answering questions fielded by the media.CBI sources said the role of "political pressure" would be the focus of their probe into cases involving the liquor baron.Real driver' behind Rs 900cr loan under lens.The CBI's interest in the "political angle" also stems from the fact that the bankers chose to take the brand as collateral, despite their historical reluctance to use intangible assets as security.The banks cited the Grant Thornton's valuation of Rs 3, 400 crore for KFA brand. This despite the lack of clarity in the Companies Act over whether brands could be treated as assets.Similarly in 2012, while restructuring the loans to the grounded carrier, banks decided to convert the loans into equity.They also reduced the interest rate and agreed to provide more funding despite KFA's sliding stock price.Sources said that at CBI's behest, the Serious Frauds Investigation Office (SFIO) is also looking at the remittances of Mallya's companies.