It is no mystery that fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya, who owes Indian banks around Rs 9,000 crore, loves a luxurious lifestyle. From splurging money on sports teams (Formula One, cricket and football team) and his penchant for buying rare things like Mahatma Gandhi's glasses and Tipu Sultan's sword -- the King of Goods Times has done it all. Yet, there's one thing many people might not know about the once-called 'Richard Branson of India' -- he apparently owns a gold toilet. Yes, even after seeing his business turn upside down and the Indian authorities desperately pushing for his extradition, Mallya's London home has all the worldly luxurious things one can imagine, one of which is a golden toilet.
An ET report quoted author James Crabtree saying that once he got a unique opportunity to see Mallya's golden toilet during a visit to his house. James, who is also an associate professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School, said this at an event in Mumbai this week.
Revealing about his rendezvous with the absconding businessman, James said when he visited Mallya's mansion in Regent's Park, London, he found him in a pensive mood as he could not go to the Monaco Grand Prix. "He was contemplating the fact that he wasn't going to fly out to Monaco, but instead had to go to his other mansion and watch it on television like everyone else," said James. The writer elaborated that he saw something in shimmering gold as Mallya excused himself after taking in three shots of whiskey.
"Here I discovered this vision in shimmering gold. A gold toilet with a golden rim and gold on top. Sadly there was no golden toilet paper. But it did have monogrammed fluffy white towels," the newspaper quoted the writer as saying.
Among other things, Mallya is accused of siphoning off a big chunk of Rs 6,027-crore loan he took from a consortium of 17 banks for his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines to shell companies in seven countries, including the US, UK, France and Ireland. While State Bank of India (SBI) had a maximum exposure of Rs 1,600 crore, other public-sector banks that gave loans to Kingfisher are Punjab National Bank with an exposure of Rs 800 crore, Bank of India (Rs 650 crore), Bank of Baroda (Rs 550 crore), Central Bank of India (Rs 410 crore), UCO Bank (Rs 320 crore), Corporation Bank (Rs 310 crore), State Bank of Mysore (Rs 150 crore), Indian Overseas Bank (Rs 140 crore).
(Edited by Manoj Sharma)