New Delhi: Mumbai special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court has adjourned the order on the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) application seeking to declare liquor baron Vijay Mallya a fugitive offender.
The order has been adjourned till January 5, as the special PMLA judge is not ready with his order.
Last month, Mumbai special PMLA court had rejected Mallya’s plea seeking a stay on hearing of ED’s application to declare him a fugitive. The decision from the judicature had come after five parties, including a family member of Mallya, sought court dossiers with regard to the ED seeking to get Mallya declared a fugitive economic offender under the new law.
The special courts, under the new law, have a right to declare a person a fugitive economic offender. The courts can order immediate confiscation of the offenders’ properties and other assets. A fugitive economic offender is a person against whom an arrest warrant has been issued for committing a scheduled offence and who has left India to avoid criminal prosecution, or being abroad, refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution.
Mallya is also facing money-laundering charges in the United Kingdom after India initiated extradition proceedings against him. Both, ED along with Central Bureau of Investigation have filed several cases for alleged loan default against him.
On November 22, the United Kingdom High Court issued an order asking Mallya to pay a hefty amount of GBP 88,000 to UBS Investment Bank, which had issued GBP 20.4 million in the mortgage loan for his London property, and ruled in favour of UBS to take possession of Mallya’s palatial Cornwall Terrace home.
The Westminster Magistrates Court in London on December 10 ordered the extradition of Mallya to India, who is facing charges of loan default to the tune of Rs 9,000 crore. Mallya left India in 2016, following which, the Indian government initiated extradition proceedings against him. The matter of Mallya’s extradition has now been referred to UK’s Secretary of State.