Apex court notice to Mallya on contempt plea by banks

Apex court notice to Mallya on contempt plea by banks

Apex court notice to Mallya  on contempt plea by banks

The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice to industrialist Vijay Mallya on a plea by a group of 17 lending banks for contempt action against him for not disclosing his complete assets, including the $ 45 million received from Diageo, the British liquor major.

A bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman sought response from Mallya, believed to be in the United Kingdom, and his defunct Kingfisher Airlines Ltd within four weeks on two applications filed by the banks consortium led by SBI.

The order came after Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi submitted that Mallya has not fully disclosed his assets. “He has also not disclosed the amount of $ 45 million received by him from Diageo,” Rohatgi pointed out.

The court had on April 26 directed for disclosure of all assets owned by Mallya and his family, including his estranged wife and children, to the banks, saying it would help banks in negotiations and final settlement. The consortium of banks had sought re-payment of Rs 9,400 crore given to Kingfisher Airlines Ltd.

In their applications, filed early this month, the banks claimed that Mallya had provided wrong details of his assets in a sealed cover to the court. They contended a lot of information had also been concealed, including a cash transaction to the tune of Rs 2,500 crore, which amounted to contempt of court Rohatgi had earlier claimed before the court that Mallya is “a fugitive from justice in India,” and was playing “hide and seek” and cooking a “cock and bull story” about settling the dues and reasons for non-disclosure of his assets.

Rohatgi contended Mallya was deliberately concealing facts as he had no intention to come back.

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