Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya on Thursday asked the Centre to take his money “unconditionally” and drop all charges against him.
Mallya, who is fighting his extradition to India, faces fraud and money laundering charges resulting from the collapse of his defunct company Kingfisher Airlines. The businessman fled India and moved to London in March 2016. Mallya owes Indian banks more than Rs 9,000 crore.
In a tweet, the liquor baron congratulated the Centre for its Rs 20-lakh-crore relief package to revive the economy battered by the countrywide lockdown enforced to contain the coronavirus pandemic, However, he lamented that his repeated offers to repay his dues have fallen on deaf ears.
“They can print as much currency as they want but should a small contributor like me who offers 100% payback of State-owned Bank loans be constantly ignored?” he asked. “Please take my money unconditionally and close.”
Mallya has repeatedly offered to pay back 100% of the amount borrowed by his defunct Kingfisher Airlines, but neither the banks nor the Enforcement Directorate have been willing to accept the offer.
According to Mallya, the allegations against him were related to the borrowing of Rs 900 crore only. He expressed his disappointment with the “media narrative” that says Rs 9,000 crore as the amount owed in the fraud and money laundering case brought by the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate against him.
Earlier this month, Mallya had sought permission to appeal in the United Kingdom Supreme Court against his extradition to India. This came after the High Court in London dismissed his appeal against a 2018 order to extradite him to India over money laundering charges.
India submitted an extradition request to the United Kingdom in February 2017 after Mallya made his self-imposed exile clear. In July, the United Kingdom High Court allowed him to challenge his extradition order.
In January this year, a court in Mumbai allowed the banks to utilise Mallya’s movable assets to recover the money they are owed. On January 6, the Supreme Court said Mallya cannot cite the pendency of his plea in the top court to delay insolvency proceedings in courts “anywhere else in the world”.