Indian banks pursue Mallya chapter order in UK court docket

London, July 8

A consortium of Indian banks led by the State Bank of India (SBI) are pursuing their chapter order towards liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya within the High Court in England, as they search to determine that any settlement provide made by him is now “dead in the water”.

In a listening to within the insolvency division of the High Court in London on Tuesday, Justice Michael Briggs heard arguments from the banks, represented by barrister Marcia Shekerdemian, that pursuing the chapter order was required because the banks weren’t secured collectors, as claimed by Mallya.

It follows Justice Briggs’ ruling again in April within the case when he had concluded that Mallya ought to be given time till petitions pending in India may be decided earlier than a call is made on a chapter order in London.

“There can be no doubt that it is appropriate to make a bankruptcy order in this case. The numerous hurdles being put up by VJM (Mallya) are without merit,” notice the arguments laid out earlier than the court docket on behalf of the banks.

The banks’ authorized crew argued that the belongings of United Breweries Holdings Limited (UBHL), being relied on by Mallya as a part of a second settlement provide, are “unquestionably under the control of its Official Liquidator” and due to this fact not accessible to Mallya or the erstwhile administration of UBHL.

“This means that the Second Settlement Offer is effectively dead in the water as neither VJM nor his associates nor the erstwhile management have any control over UBHL’s assets, which form part of that offer,” they argued.

Mallya’s authorized crew, led by barrister Philip Marshall, countered that the banks had been secured collectors and that the petition ought to be dismissed.

A reference was additionally made to the parallel extradition proceedings towards Mallya, with the banks highlighting that the 64-year-old had been refused permission to attraction to the High Court on the grounds that he “would not receive a fair trial in India because of his political beliefs”.

“This court should not look beyond those decisions,” it was famous.

According to the UK Home Office, Mallya’s extradition to India on prices of fraud and cash laundering was ordered in February 2019 however it can’t touch upon an “ongoing legal case”.

With all avenues of authorized recourse exhausted within the UK after his permission to attraction within the UK Supreme Court was denied in May, the subsequent steps within the extradition course of stay unsure because the UK authorities doesn’t formally affirm or deny any purposes made earlier than it for asylum.

The SBI-led consortium of 13 Indian banks additionally contains Bank of Baroda, Corporation financial institution, Federal Bank Ltd, IDBI Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, Jammu & Kashmir Bank, Punjab & Sind Bank, Punjab National Bank, State Bank of Mysore, UCO Bank, United Bank of India and JM Financial Asset Reconstruction Co. Pvt Ltd.

It had initiated chapter proceedings towards Mallya in December 2018 as a part of efforts to recoup round 1.145 billion kilos in unpaid loans.

Judge Briggs has reserved his judgment on the longer term course of the petition following this week’s listening to and can hand down the ruling at a later date.

In his April ruling, he had famous that the authorized instances being pursued by Mallya in India stood an inexpensive prospect of success. The banks have returned to court docket with an amended petition and sought the chapter order to safe the cash owed. — PTI

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