The CBI has arrested an insolvency resolution professional (IRP) appointed by the NCLT and another person for allegedly receiving a bribe of Rs 3.5 lakh from a consultant by threatening him with a criminal case, officials said on Monday. In what is likely to be the first corruption case by the CBI against an NCLT-appointed IRP, the agency has taken into custody Arun Mohan, the IRP, and his friend Paresh Kumar, CEO of New Delhi-based Multimax Asset Reconstruction Pvt Ltd for allegedly receiving a bribe of Rs 3.5 lakh against a demand of Rs 5 lakh.
The complainant and his wife were appointed as consultants by FRTech, Hyderabad, which became insolvent under the IBC (Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code), the CBI has alleged. For the work done, primarily through e-mails, between March and November, 2017, the couple had raised an invoice of Rs 18 lakh towards the company, they said. The company had paid them Rs 15.20 lakh while a sum of Rs 2.8 lakh remained outstanding, the officials said. When the company was declared insolvent under IBC, the NCLT, Mumbai appointed Mohan as IRP on November 14 last year with whom the complainant had raised the issue of his outstanding amount, they said.
Mohan allegedly demanded further details relating to his wife’s appointment like work, payment from the complainant which were provided by him, the officials said. On December 30, Mohan made a phone call to the complainant saying a criminal case will be filed against his wife and asked him to meet at Paresh Kumar’s office in Laxmi Nagar area, the FIR alleged. During the meeting, Mohan allegedly told the complainant that in order to hush up the criminal proceedings he will have to pay Rs 5 lakh as bribe, they said.
Mohan’s friend Kumar, who was present during the meeting, said he would be in touch regarding the alleged payment, the CBI has alleged in the FIR. “He (Mohan) assured complainant that he would hush up the case in the court if the payment is made to him. He said that he will send notice to the complainant in this regard, but he will also help in getting the suitable reply prepared,” the FIR alleged. The complainant had recorded conversations and phone calls exchanged between him, Mohan and Kumar. The CBI verified the claims of the complainant in a clandestine operation where the amount was being negotiated with Kumar and brought down to Rs 4 lakh, they said, adding that both were arrested later.