Supreme Court on Friday issued notice to Enforcement Directorate (ED) on a plea filed by Vijay Mallya seeking stay on the proceedings instituted by the ED to pronounce him a fugitive economic offender and seize his assets.
The top court however refused to stay proceedings initiated by the ED.
Mallya had first moved Bombay High Court seeking stay on the proceedings instituted by the ED to pronounce him a fugitive economic offender and seize his assets. The high court had rejected his petition. Subsequently, Mallya had moved Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court seeking the same relief only to see the petition meeting the same fate. Mallya then approached the top court.
On June 22, the ED had moved the special PMLA Court to pronounce Mallya a fugitive economic offender and impound all his properties, valued at more Rs 12,000 crore, under the new FEOA (Fugitive Economic Offender Act) law.
It may be recalled that, just a day ago, in the aftermath of the arrest of the August Westland Middleman Christian Michel on Wednesday, Mallya had made an offer to pay “100 percent of the principal amount”. Michel was brought back after authorities in the United Arab Emirates okayed the Indian government’s request for his extradition. New Delhi’s has similarily sought extradition of Mallya who is holed up in the UK and the proceedings are still going on.
Mallya said in a series of tweets: “I see the quick media narrative about my extradition decision. That is separate and will take its own legal course. The most important point is public money and I am offering to pay 100 per cent back. I humbly request the banks and government to take it. If payback refused, Why?”
Mallya was a Rajya Sabha MP when he quietly sneaked out of India in March 2016, even as a consortium of 13 banks was planning to initiate loan recovery proceedings against him. He subsequently resigned his membership of the Upper House.
In late 2017, India had filed expatriation proceedings against him. Mallya is currently on bail in London.
—India Legal Bureau