Top court to reveal Indian businessman’s overseas assets for debt recovery
Indian businessman Vijay Mallya’s troubles seem to be mounting. After the ministry of external affairs revoked his passport on Sunday, the Supreme Court has now directed him to disclose all the overseas assets held by him and his estranged wife and children to the banks which are seeking the recovery of more than $1,352 million loaned to his Kingfisher Airlines.
Mallya has submitted the overseas assets details in a sealed cover to the top court. According to him, asking for his overseas assets is a violation of his privacy. But the court will not keep his overseas assets confidential. Instead, the assets will be revealed to the consortium of banks led by the State bank of India for recovery of debts.
The banks would act on the disclosures in accordance with law. They have to inform the court within two months the action taken on the basis of these details.
The court’s direction on disclosure of assets came as Mallya is said to be living at a $15 million mansion in England’s Hertfordshire county and appeared unwilling to return to India and personally appear before the apex court.
According to Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, Mallya is a fugitive fleeing justice. If he wants to return home, a one-way travel permit could have been arranged, he said.
Mallya’s lawyers say he cannot return to India when banks want him to be jailed.
Banks allege he is not cooperating with them in the investigation and are ready to even approach the UK government, if required, for recovery of loans through liquidation of Mallya’s overseas assets.
Mallya left India on March 2 to allegedly escape his creditors. Banks recently turned down his plan to pay a settlement amount of $1,032 million.
Adding to Mallya’s woes, the Rajya Sabha’s (upper house of parliament) ethics committee will recommend his expulsion from the House as he has not declared changes in his assets and liabilities for 10 years.