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Chanda Kochhar Quits ICICI Bank; Sandeep Bakhshi New MD and CEO

ICICI bank said it has accepted Chanda Kochhar's request for early retirement. It also added that the inquiry instituted by the bank Board will remain unaffected by this new development.

Updated:October 5, 2018, 4:45 PM IST
New Delhi: ICICI Bank MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar has quit the bank with immediate effect, the company informed the bourses on Thursday.

"The board accepted this request with immediate effect. The enquiry instituted by the board will remain unaffected by this and certain benefits will be subject to the outcome of the enquiry," the bank said on Thursday.

The board has decided to appoint Sandeep Bakhshi as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. His appointment will be for a period of five years until October 3, 2023, subject to various approvals. ​

Following the announcement, ICICI Bank stocks went up by roughly 5.4 percent on the Bombay Stock Exchange to hit a high of Rs 319.20.

In June, ICICI Bank said Kochhar would go on leave pending the completion of a probe over an alleged conflict of interest that has led to months of controversy for the lender and named group veteran Sandeep Bakhshi as its interim head.

Kochhar, 56, who has been CEO of ICICI Bank, India's third-biggest lender by assets, since May 2009, has faced allegations of favouring Videocon Group, a consumer electronics and oil and gas exploration company, in the bank's lending practices. Videocon's founders had an investment in a renewable energy company founded by Kochhar's husband.

ICICI Bank's board, which had initially backed Kochhar calling the alleged nepotism charges against her "malicious and unfounded", had said it would institute a probe headed by an independent person into allegations raised by an anonymous whistleblower.

"In line with the highest levels of governance and corporate standards, Ms Chanda Kochhar has decided to go on leave till the completion of the enquiry," the bank has said.

Multiple government agencies, including the CBI and regulator Sebi, are already probing the alleged lapses involving Kochhar and her family members.
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