Mallya appears in Bangalore court over TDS case; gets bail

Vijay Mallya, the promoter and chairman of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, on Thursday personally appeared before the Special Court for Economic Offences in Bangalore, in connection with three criminal cases booked against him by the Income Tax Department for not remitting around Rs400 crore of tax deducted at source (TDS) to the government.

The court granted him bail on a Rs2 lakh bond in each case, including Rs1 lakh in cash deposit and bail bonds and solvent surety for the same sum. He was also directed to cooperate in the trial.

Mallya appeared before the court at 11 am, and the judge adjourned the hearing to 3 pm, asking the counsel for the I-T Department to file objections.

''Mallya is not likely to cooperate with proceedings … he is a non-resident Indian, frequently travelling abroad, and therefore there is a likelihood of him not cooperating with the trial and likely to sabotage the trial as he is an influential businessman having enormous clout…,'' the I-T Department said in its objection filed through counsel Jeevan J Neeralgi.

Mallya, who came back to the court around 3 pm, left at around 6 pm after signing the bail papers.

The summons was first issued to him in February 2013 after the I-T Department lodged the first of its three complaints.

However, the Bangalore City Police failed to serve summons citing one or the other reason on several occasions, despite issuance of repeated summons.

Finally, lawyers representing him appeared before the Special Court in April 2014 after the Karnataka High Court, in January 2014, refused to interfere with the criminal cases.

The proceedings before the Special Court were stayed from August 2013 to January 2014 in view of the interim order passed by the High Court earlier.

The I-T Department had filed three cases during February-March 2013 after the company failed to remit TDS amount for the financial years 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.