Vijay Mallya plea for permission to appeal against his extradition rejected by UK court
Fugitive Vijay Mallya today met with another jolt as a UK High Court rejected his application for permission to appeal against his extradition order. The embattled liquor tycoon, who is wanted in India on alleged fraud and money laundering charges amounting to Rs 9,000 crores, had filed the application seeking "leave to appeal" in the High Court after UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid signed off on a Westminster Magistrates' Court order for his extradition to face the Indian courts back in February, said a PTI report.
Former Kingfisher Airlines boss' "leave to appeal" application had been passed on to a single judge, who was to make a decision on the basis of papers submitted as part of the appeals process. Now that the "judge on papers" application has been rejected by Justice Davis, 63-year-old Mallya has the option to "renew his application for permission to appeal" by this Friday. Image source: Reuters
A spokesperson for the UK Judiciary was quoted as saying, "The application for permission to appeal was refused by Mr Justice William Davis on 05/04/2019," adding "The appellant (Mallya) has five business days to apply for oral consideration. If a renewal application is made, it will be listed before a High Court judge and dealt with at a hearing." Image source: Reuters
The latest ruling marks a fresh legal setback for the UB Group chief, who just last week reportdly offered to curtail his "lavish" lifestyle to satisfy numerous Indian banks trying to recoup some of the nearly 1.145 billion pounds owed to them as a result of the now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines' unpaid loans.Image source: Reuters
However, a consortium of 13 Indian banks led by State Bank of India (SBI) did not agree to his offer as they seek access to nearly 260,000 pounds in an ICICI Bank current account in his name in London. The judge in that case, Master David Cook, has reserved his judgment on an interim court order and is expected to pronounce his final ruling in the coming weeks. Image source: Reuters
Mallya has been based in the UK since March 2016 and remains on bail on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard in April 2017. At the end of a year-long extradition trial at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London last December, Judge Emma Arbuthnot had ruled that the "flashy" billionaire had a "case to answer" in the Indian courts. Image source: Reuters
India and the UK have an Extradition Treaty signed in 1992 and in force since November 1993. So far only one successful extradition has taken place from the UK to India under the treaty - that of Samirbhai Vinubhai Patel, who was sent back to India in 2016 to face trial in connection with his involvement in the post-Godhra riots of 2002, PTI report added. Image source: Reuters