India asks UK not to consider asylum for Vijay Mallya

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By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published: June 11, 2020 9:46:55 pm

vijay mallya, vijay mallya money laundering, kingfisher airlines, vijay mallya assets, PMLA, PMLA case, The MEA said India has put in an early extradition request of the fugitive businessman.

Days after the United Kingdom said Vijay Mallya is unlikely to be sent to India soon, the MEA Thursday appealed to the UK government not to consider asylum to the fugitive liquor baron if requested by him.

Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said India has put in an early extradition request of Mallya. “We have been in touch with the UK authorities for early extradition of Vijay Mallya. We have also requested the UK side not to consider his asylum if requested by him,” the MEA said in a media briefing.

The UK government on June 4 said it is unlikely that Mallya, who is charged for money laundering and fraud related to unrecovered loans to his now-defunct Kingfisher airlines, will be brought back to India soon as there was a “confidential legal issue” that required to be resolved before the extradition could be arranged.

The 64-year-old businessman had lost his appeal in the UK Supreme Court last month against his extradition to India to face charges of cheating, criminal conspiracy, money laundering and diversion of loan funds. He has been in UK since March 2016.

A spokesperson for the UK High Commission had said, “we cannot estimate how long this issue will take to resolve”.

On May 21, the MEA had said India was in touch with the UK government over Mallya’s extradition after he exhausted all legal options against New Delhi’s request for the same.

Before that, on April 20, the London High Court had dismissed Mallya’s appeal against a Westminster Magistrates’ Court extradition order certified by the UK Home Secretary. The embattled businessman had been given 14 days to seek permission to move the Supreme Court, which he did on May 4, and his application was rejected. Following this, he was set on a 28-day “required period” before he could be extradited to India.

Alleged for loan defaults of over Rs 10,000 crore to a consortium of Indian banks led by the State Bank of India (SBI), Mallya and his now-defunct company, Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, has come under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi).

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