Acting on banks’ allegations that liquor baron Vijay Mallya had transferred USD 40 million to his children in “flagrant violation” of various judicial orders, the Supreme Court has asked him to file his response on the matter in three weeks.
A bench, comprising justices Kurian Joseph and AM Khanwilkar, asked the beleaguered businessman to file an affidavit and fixed the plea of the consortium of banks led by State Bank of India for further hearing on February 2.
Senior advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for the banks, alleged that orders of Debt Recovery Tribunal and Karnataka High Court have been violated by Mr Mallya by transferring 40 million USD to his children.
It is a matter of record that Mr Mallya and his firm owe over Rs. 6,200 core to the banks and the money should have been deposited in New Delhi, he said.
Senior advocate CS Vaidyanathan, appearing for Mr Mallya, sought time to respond to the banks’ plea, which was granted.
In October last year the court had rapped Mr Mallya for not making full disclosure of his overseas properties and had asked him to do so within a month.
The bench had also pulled up Mr Mallya for not giving details of USD 40 million which he had allegedly received from British firm Diageo in February last year, saying it was of the “prima facie view” that proper disclosure as per its earlier order was not made.
The Attorney General had alleged that the USD 40 million belonged to the consortium of banks which was now stashed in Mr Mallya’s Swiss bank account and said that it should be brought back to India or the Supreme Court.
The consortium of banks including SBI had on August 29 last year told the Supreme Court that Mr Mallya had deliberately not made full disclosure of his assets including the USD 40 million he received on February 25 from Diageo.
It had asked Mr Mallya, who owes over Rs. 9,000 crore to around 17 banks, to deposit a “substantial amount” with it to “prove his bonafide” that he was “serious” about meaningful negotiations and settlement.