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PMLA Court Says Vijay Mallya’s Vendetta Claim Is Figment Of His Imagination

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| January 20 , 2019 , 12:21 IST

A special PMLA court observed in its order on Saturday that Businessman Vijay Mallya’s claim of Indian government’s efforts to extradite him was a result of “political vendetta” was “mere fiction of his imagination”.

Mallya, accused of defaulting on loans of over Rs 9,000 crore, was declared a fugitive economic offender (FEO) by special Judge M S Azmi of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court on January 5.

Talking to the media, the judge said, “Mere statement that the government of India had pursued a political vendetta against him and initiated criminal investigations and proceeding against him cannot be ground for his stay in the UK.”

Besides these bare statements, there is nothing to support as to how the government of India initiated investigation and proceedings to pursue a political vendetta, the judge said in his order.

"Hence the arguments in these regards are mere fiction of his imagination to pose himself as a law-abiding citizen," he added.

The court said the date of Mallya leaving India was March 2, 2016, and on that day admittedly there was offense registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

Mallya laid much stress on the fact that he went to attend a motorsports council meeting in Geneva on March 4, 2016.

"Had it been the case that he went to attend a pre-scheduled meeting and is a law-abiding citizen, he would have immediately informed the authorities about his schedule to return to India after attending his meeting and commitment," Azmi observed.

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Therefore, in spite of repeated summons and issuance of the warrant of arrest, he had not given any fixed date of return, therefore it would be unsafe to accept his argument that he departed India only to attend a pre-scheduled meeting, he said.

Mallya is the first businessman to be declared an FEO under the FEO Act which came into existence in August 2018.

The ED, which had moved the special court for this purpose, requested the court that Mallya, currently in the United Kingdom, be declared a fugitive and his properties be confiscated and brought under the control of the Union government as provided under the act.