A court in the United Kingdom on Friday accepted most of the evidence that the Central Bureau of Investigation has submitted against businessman Vijay Mallya in connection with his ongoing extradition trial, PTI reported.
Mallya is wanted in India on charges of defrauding banks of more than Rs 9,000 crore. The businessman, who has been in the United Kingdom since March 2016, has said he will not return to the country. India’s Ministry of External Affairs submitted an extradition request to the UK in February 2017 after Mallya made his self-imposed exile clear. The request was made on the basis of an extradition treaty signed between the countries in 1992.
The Westminster court also extended Mallya’s bail till the next date of hearing on July 11, PTI reported. Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot is expected to set a timeline for a verdict in the case that day. If the judge rules in favour of the Indian government, the United Kingdom home secretary will have two months to sign Mallya’s extradition order. However, both sides can appeal in a higher court.
In the last hearing in March, Arbuthnot said it was “blindingly obvious” that Indian banks broke rules to give loans to Mallya’s now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines. “There are clear signs that the banks seem to have gone against their guidelines [in sanctioning some loans].”
Arbuthnot had also asked the Crown Prosecution Service, which is arguing on behalf of India, to explain the source of some of the evidence. She had said that the case was a “jigsaw puzzle” with different pieces of “massive evidence”.