The government on Thursday trashed beleaguered businessman Vijay Mallya's claim that he is unable to travel back to India as his passport has been suspended. MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said "our position is very clear. Any Indian citizen who is outside India and who does not have a valid travel document for any reason, only has to approach the nearest Indian Embassy or High Commission and apply for an Emergency Certificate.
Mallya, on the other hand, has informed a Delhi court that he wants to come to India but is unable to travel back as his passport has been suspended. Mallya, who is holed up near London, made the submission through his counsel before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate in a case lodged for allegedly evading summons in connection with a FERA violation matter. On July 9, the court had cancelled the exemption from personal appearance granted to him and had directed him to appear before it.
In his application moved through senior advocate Ramesh Gupta, Mallya requested the court that some time be given so that his appearance can be secured.
The counsel submitted the copy of an email sent by Mallya, stating that his passport was suspended on April 23, 2016 without giving him any opportunity of being heard.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED), however, told the court that Mallya is already evading proceedings in several other cases and sought time to reply to the plea moved by him on Thursday.
The court has now put up the matter for further hearing on October 4.
In its plea against Mallya filed through prosecutor N K Matta, the ED had also sought issuance of non-bailable warrant against the Chairman of the now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines to secure his presence in the ongoing trial of the case, which is at its final stage.
Vijay Mallya is in deep trouble as even his prized Kinfisher Villa in Goa has been put on the block for auction by SBI with a reserve price of Rs 85 crore. The auction of the beachside property will take place on October 19. The landmark property on Candolim Beach, has an area of 12,350 square meters. The Villa itself comprises of three big bedrooms and a huge living room containing has hand-crafted teakwood furniture has been designed in Goan style by Dean D'Cruz a famous architect from the state.
The villa could be attached by banks only in May 2016 - five months after the former liquor baron celebrated his 60th birthday there.