The Delhi High Court on Thursday declined to hear a plea by former United Spirits Ltd chairman Vijay Mallya against the State Bank of India seeking a warrant for his arrest. The bank had moved the Bangalore Debt Recovery Tribunal demanding full disclosure of Mallya's assets and that his passport be impounded after the former liquor baron announced on February 26 that he is stepping down from his USL post. The SBI had declared Mallya a wilful defaulter for the non-payment of dues owed by his defunct airline.
In its application, the SBI has asked the tribunal panel to freeze Mallya's severance package from Diageo plc, which now controls USL, so that lenders can claim that amount. On Monday, PTI reported that lenders to the beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines had approached the tribunal to stake their claim on the severance package.
Central Bureau of Investigation chief Anil Sinha on Wednesday had slammed Indian banks for not approaching the anti-corruption agency against the defunct Kingfisher Airlines and its former management. The Indian Express reported that while banks loaned money to the company from 2004 to 2012, the CBI registered a case only in July 2015. “Despite our repeated requests, the banks did not file a complaint with the CBI. We had to register the case on our own initiative,” Sinha said.
He was speaking at a conference in Mumbai on financial crimes. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and State Bank of India chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya were also present at the event.