The Supreme Court Tuesday said the contempt matter involving fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya, accused in bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines, will be dealt with finally on January 18 next year. Observing that the apex court has waited sufficiently long, a bench headed by Justice U U Lalit said, We can’t be waiting any longer now. The bench noted that Mallya was held guilty of contempt in 2017.
The bench, also comprising Justices S R Bhat and Bela M Trivedi, said Mallya is at liberty to advance submissions, as are deemed appropriate, and if for any reason, he is not present before the court, lawyer on his behalf can advance submissions. What we wish to do is, we will list this matter for disposal in second week of January because we have waited sufficiently long enough, we can’t be waiting any longer now. It has to see the light of the day at some stage or the other and the process must also get over, the bench said.
The top court requested senior Jaideep Gupta to assist it as an amicus curiae in the matter. The apex court had earlier dismissed Mallya’s plea seeking review of its 2017 verdict which held him guilty of contempt for transferring USD 40 million to his children in violations of the court orders. On January 18 this year, the Centre told the top court that the government is making all efforts to extradite Mallya from the United Kingdom but the process is being delayed due to some legal issues involved in the matter. Mallya, an accused in bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines, is in the UK since March 2016. He is on bail on an extradition warrant executed three years ago by Scotland Yard on April 18, 2017.