Updated January 16th, 2024 at 15:05 IST

CBI, ED take off for UK to extradite Vijay Mallya: Here’s how his debts stack up

The airline's shutdown in 2012 left lenders grappling with an estimated debt of approximately Rs 9,000 crore.

Reported by: Abhishek Vasudev
Vijay Mallya | Image:ANI
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Fugitive beer to airline baron, Vijay Mallya who faces multiple financial fraud charges has remained elusive since 2016. Mallya has a staggering debt burden of over Rs 9,000 crore following the collapse of Kingfisher Airlines. As the government makes a fresh move to get Mallya back on Indian soil, here’s a sequence of events till now.

How it started

The airline's shutdown in 2012 left lenders grappling with an estimated debt of approximately Rs 9,000 crore, which includes accrued interest and penalties. A consortium of banks had extended loans to Kingfisher Airlines, and the ensuing financial troubles led to legal actions against Mallya.

The businessman's absence has prolonged the legal proceedings, as he has been residing in the United Kingdom since his departure from India. The government has actively sought Mallya's extradition to face charges in Indian courts. However, the extradition process has proven to be a protracted and complex affair, marked by legal battles and hearings in the UK.

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On the run

Despite numerous attempts by the government to bring him back to face justice, Mallya has consistently denied any wrongdoing and contested the charges against him. His case highlights the challenges associated with extraditing individuals across international borders and navigating the intricacies of legal systems.

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The mounting debts owed by Mallya have underscored the broader issues of financial fraud, loan default, and corporate governance. The Kingfisher Airlines episode has been a cautionary tale, prompting a closer examination of lending practices and regulatory oversight.

Mallya's case is a focal point for discussions on the need for enhanced mechanisms to address financial misconduct and expedite the extradition of individuals evading legal proceedings.

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Indian government’s fresh move

In a move to accelerate the extradition process of economic offenders residing in the United Kingdom (UK), the government is dispatching a high-level team comprising officials from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Enforcement Directorate (ED), and the National Investigation Agency (NIA). The primary targets of this initiative include prominent figures like diamond trader Nirav Modi and former Kingfisher Airlines tycoon Vijay Mallya.

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The move comes as part of the government’s ongoing efforts to bring back individuals accused of financial misconduct and fraud, who have sought refuge in the UK. Both Modi and Mallya face charges related to substantial financial irregularities and loan defaults.

Last year news agency Press Trust of India reported that Mallya bought properties worth Rs 330 crore in England and France during 2015-16 even as his Kingfisher Airlines was facing a cash crunch at that time and banks had not recovered the loans defaulted by the liquor baron.

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Published January 16th, 2024 at 15:05 IST