Vijay Mallya to be extradited, UK court may issue arrest warrant

Vijay MallyaFugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya, who is facing charges of wilful bank defaults to nearly Rs9,000 crore, is likely to be extradited with the UK's secretary of state certifying an extradition request by the Indian government.

The ministry of external affairs today said the British government has certified India's request for loan defaulting liquor baron Vijay Mallya's extradition and a UK court is considering issuing warrant.

"In February 2017, the UK government's home office conveyed that India's request for extradition of Mallya has been stratified by the secretary of state," MEA spokesperson Gopal Baglay told reporters at a press briefing.

He said the UK Home Office had forwarded the extradition plea to a district court in order to secure a formal warrant against Mallya.

Stressing that India has a ''legitimate'' case against Mallya, he said if an extradition request is honored, it shows their ''sensitivity towards our concerns''. ''We have made the extradition request in prescribed format and it is for the UK to deliberate on the request and take further action,'' he added.

Mallya fled to Britain in March 2016 after being pursued in courts by banks seeking to recover about Rs 9,000 crore owed by his Kingfisher Airline.

Despite multiple injunctions, he has failed to appear before investigators at the Enforcement Directorate in connection with a probe under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

In January, a CBI court had issued a non-bailable warrant against Mallya in the Rs720-crore IDBI Bank loan default case.

So far, an amount of Rs155 crore has been recovered by public sector banks by conducting online mega auction by selling from seized properties from Mallya.

Almost a year after Vijay Mallya left the country, the government, last month, handed over to the UK an extradition request for the fugitive businessman who is facing cases of loan default and other financial irregularities.

Meanwhile, in a written reply in Rajya Sabha, minister of state for external affairs V K Singh said in the last five year, only one fugitive criminal Samirbhai Vinubhai Patel, has been extradition from the UK.

There are already 15 extradition requests pending with the British government, although India and the UK have an extradition treaty in force since 1993, he noted.