“The way some channels are running a campaign, my client has several apprehensions”,said his Lawyer C S Vaidyanathan to the Court.
“Media ultimately stands for public interest. They have no other interest against you" Justice Kurian replied
Business tycoon Vijay Mallya today submitted a proposal to the Supreme Court saying he will pay Rs 4,000 Crore to the consortium of banks by September 15 and also assured an extra Rs 2000Crore if he won an ongoing law suit against a company “which will soon be decided”.
A bench of justice Kurien Joseph and justice Rohinton Nariman has allowed the consortium of banks to go through the proposal and respond within a week's time to the proposal and posted the matter for hearing on April 7.
Appearing for Mallya senior lawyer C S Vaidyanathan urged the court to keep the proposal in a sealed cover as “the media was vitiating the atmosphere, exaggerating the issue and it would be harmful if the details of negotiations went out while the negotiations were on through video conferencing”
“The way some channels are running a campaign, my client has several apprehensions”, Vaidyanathan said.
Justice Joseph then told the lawyer that “media ultimately stands for public interest. They have no other interest against you. They only want money taken from the banks to be repaid”
It is to be noted that SC was on March 9 informed by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi that Mallya had left the country following which the court issued notice to him on the petition by a consortium of 17 PSU banks seeking his summoning and impounding of his passport.
After AG said Mallya could be in London, a bench of justices Kurien Joseph and Rohinton Nariman has issued notice to him to be served through his official Rajya Sabha email ID through Indian High Commission at London.
Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, representing the 17 PSU banks told the court that Mallya left the country on March 2, 2016, the day the banks had moved the court seeking to restrain him from going abroad.
Rohatgi told the court that the banks were not after Mallya’s blood but only wanted his passport to be kept impounded till the loan recovery proceedings are over.
Led by SBI, the 17 bank consortium is struggling to recover Rs. 6,963 crore debt due from Kingfisher Airlines
Firing a volley of questions at the consortium of banks, the bench had asked them why it gave so much loan to him when they already knew that his assets were mostly abroad.
The bench also asked if so much loans could have been forwarded without securing adequate assets as guarantee.
It also asked why loans were extended to him when he was a defaulter and was facing proceedings in court of law.
The banks informed the SC that Mallya's assets abroad are far in excess to loans taken by him.
The consortium of banks has sought directions for appearance of Mallya in person before apex court and for freezing his passport.
The banks have told the court that Mallya’s dues run into thousands of crores.
It is to be noted that the Debts Recovery Tribunal had on Monday passed orders restraining multinational alcoholic beverages company, Diageo Plc, from payingMallya Rs 515 crore as part of a settlement to exit Diageo-owned United Spirits Limited.
The move by ED, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), comes after the CBI registered a suo motu FIR against Kingfisher Airlines in July 2015. The company owes at least Rs 7,000 crore to 17 banks; some of them such as the State Bank of India and Punjab National bank have already named Mallya and his company as a “willful defaulter”.
The CBI had registered the FIR against Mallya. A Raghunathan, chief financial officer of Kingfisher Airlines, and unknown officials of IDBI Bank. It is alleged that the loans were sanctioned in violation of norms regarding credit limits.
Last month, the consortium had moved the debt recovery tribunal (DRT) to attach defunct carrier Kingfisher Airlines’ promoter Vijay Mallya’s passport.
The consortium also appealed that the funds Mallya will receive from Diageo be kept in an escrow account till the liquor baron clears the dues. Punjab National Bank, SBI and nited Bank of India have declared KingFisher Airlines and its promoter Mr. Mallya as a 'wilful defaulter.'
The SBI has the highest exposure of Rs 1,600 crore to the beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines.
Other banks that have exposure to the airline include Punjab National Bank and IDBI Bank (Rs.800 crore each), Bank of India (Rs. 650 crore), Bank of Baroda (Rs. 550 crore), Central Bank of India (Rs. 410 crore).
UCO Bank has to recover Rs. 320 crore, Corporation Bank (Rs 310 crore), State Bank of Mysore (Rs 150 crore), Indian Overseas Bank (Rs. 140 crore), Federal Bank (Rs. 90 crore), Punjab & Sind Bank (Rs. 60 crore) and Axis Bank (Rs. 50 crore)