The Ministry of External Affairs on Monday submitted before the Supreme Court that the extradition of fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya was ordered by the highest court of the United Kingdom but it has not come into effect yet.
The Central government said that it is not aware of the “secret” ongoing proceedings in the UK, which is delaying Mallya’s extradition.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Ministry, said that government is neither aware of the nature of the proceedings nor is a party to it in the UK Supreme Court which had cleared the extradition of Mallya to India.
The response came when a bench of the apex court, headed by Justice UU Lalit, asked what’s holding back Vijay Mallya’s extradition. Centre told the bench that nature of extradition proceedings not known and it’s not a party to in the case in the UK.
The court took into note that Mallya’s lawyer was unable to state by when legal, extradition proceedings will end in the UK, his likelihood to appear before it to pursue the contempt matter. The court has now deferred the hearing of the case for November 2.
Earlier, the Supreme Court had dismissed a plea filed by Mallya seeking a review of its May 2017 order holding him guilty of contempt for transferring USD 40 million to his children in violation of the court’s order, and sought his presence before it on October 5.
The court had directed the MHA to ensure his presence in the courtroom on that day.
Mallya is an accused in a bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines and is presently in the United Kingdom.
The Supreme Court had issued its May 9, 2017, order on a plea by a consortium of banks led by the State Bank of India (SBI), claiming he had allegedly transferred USD 40 million received from British firm Diageo to his children in “flagrant violation” of various judicial orders.
Earlier, the apex court had asked Mallya about the “truthfulness” of his disclosure of assets and the transfer of money to his children. At that time, the top court was dealing with pleas of lending banks seeking contempt action and a direction to Mallya to deposit USD 40 million received from offshore firm Diageo to the banks respectively.
The banks had then accused Mallya of concealing the facts and diverted the money to his son Siddharth Mallya and daughters Leanna Mallya and Tanya Mallya in flagrant violation of the orders passed by the Karnataka High Court.