ED attaches Rs 1,000 cr foreign assets of Zoom

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Mumbai | Published: July 3, 2015 10:00:25 AM

Zoom Developers is one of the top bank defaulters and it owes Rs 3,002 crore to 26 public sector banks such as State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, among others.

Zoom DevelopersZoom Developers is one of the top bank defaulters and it owes Rs 3,002 crore to 26 public sector banks such as State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, among others. (Reuters)

The enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday issued an order for attachment of a foreign property of Zoom Developers Pvt Ltd worth Rs 1,000 crore in connection with a forex violation case registered by the agency against the firm, said senior officials.

Zoom Developers is one of the top bank defaulters and it owes Rs 3,002 crore to 26 public sector banks such as State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, United Bank of India, Union Bank of India, Indian Bank and Oriental Bank of Commerce among others. Zoom is under the scanner of multiple investigating agencies in the country.

The ED order pertains to the attachment of a 1,208-acre property of Zoom Developers in Soledad, California. The agency has found that the company diverted $40 million of bank loans in 2007 to invest in the property in partnership with a Philippines-based entity. According to official sources, the firm had planned to develop an integrated township on the land.

“The ED will now issue a Letter Rogatory (LR) to US for enforcement of the attachment order,” said an ED official who did not want to be named.

LR is a formal request to a foreign court seeking judicial assistance in investigating an entity in another country.

In a separate development a special court in Indore refused to grant bail to Zoom’s company secretary, Sharad Kabra in connection with a money laundering case against the firm. Kabra was arrested by ED in May.

So far public sector banks have attached properties worth around Rs 85 crore of Zoom but managed to sell only one property for Rs 11 crore.

At the end of March 2015, outstanding bad loans total some Rs 3 lakh crore while restructured assets come close to Rs 4 lakh crore. The proportion of impaired assets will rise to 13 per cent of total advances by March 2016, according to credit rating agency Fitch.

– See more at: https://indianexpress.com/article/business/business-others/ed-attaches-rs-1000-cr-foreign-assets-of-zoom/#sthash.0Ix8HgCN.dpuf

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