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Indian Banks Win £1.15 billion Debt Recovery Case against Vijay Mallya in UK

Vijay Mallya Indian liquor baron lost a major lawsuit filed in the United Kingdom by 13 Indian banks including State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Corporation Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, Federal Bank Ltd., and IDBI Bank Ltd., to recover over £1.15 billion ($1.55 billion) from him. Judge Andrew Henshaw in London on Tuesday May 8, 2018 refused to overturn a worldwide order freezing Vijay Mallya’s assets and upheld an Indian court’s ruling that a consortium of 13 Indian banks were entitled to recover funds from him and said the lenders can enforce the Indian court ruling that relates to allegations that Mallya willfully defaulted on about $1.4 billion in debt for his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines Ltd. The order stops Mallya from “removing any assets from England and Wales up to that value or to in any way dispose of, deal with or diminish the value of his assets in or outside of this jurisdiction, up to the same value”. Judge Henshaw did not permit appealing for the ruling, which leaves Mallya’s lawyers with the only option of petitioning the Court of Appeal directly.

Vijay Mallya 62 year old liquor tycoon wanted in India on loan default and money-laundering charges had fled from India on March 2, 2016 when the banks were attempting to recover nearly Rs. 9000 crores in unpaid loans to Kingfisher Airlines, a premium airline he started in 2005 and shut down seven years later. A court in London is hearing the case of Indian investigators for Mallya’s extradition to face trial in India.

  • The above ruling will allow Banks to enforce the underlying judgment by the Indian Debt Recovery Tribunal immediately
  • Banks can sell his UK assets to recover dues
  • This case also sets a strong precedent for parties to secure a worldwide freezing order in enforcing judgments against willful defaulters.
  • The asset freeze order had forced the flamboyant businessman to live on 5000 pounds a week, but his allowance was increased to roughly 20000 pounds a week earlier this year.
  • Vijay Mallya was arrested in London in April 2017 by Scotland Yard on an extradition warrant issued by Indian authorities accusing him of conspiring to swindle the IDBI Bank.
  • He is out on bail on a bond worth 650000 pounds.
  • High Court of London on February 12, 2018 had ordered Mallya to pay an estimated USD 90 million to a Singapore-based aircraft leasing company in claims. The case involves a number of aircraft leased by Vijay Mallya’s now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines from BOC Aviation in 2014.
  • Mallya and his now defunct Kingfisher Airlines are embroiled in numerous lawsuits in the UK and his native country India over fraud, tax evasion, loan defaults and money laundering allegations.

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