Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla on Saturday, 24 July said that India has received the 'best assurance' from the UK government regarding businessman Vijay Mallya’s extradition.
Mallya has been absconding and is wanted in connection with a money laundering case registered against him, in which a case has been filed against Kingfisher Airlines, which is now defunct.
Shringla is on a two-day visit to the UK. He said that the British government is working towards extraditing Mallya by following due process. “We have been given to understand that there is a process in place and that the British side is working on his (Mallya) extradition based on that process,” Shringla told reporters, when asked about the delay in Mallya's extradition.
Mallya is believed to be undergoing a 'confidential' asylum application process after all his legal appeals were denied.
“We have no reason to doubt the assurance that this man (Mallya) wanted for economic offences in India, owes a lot of money in India and has to be returned to the country. We have made our best case and they have given their best assurance,” the Foreign Secretary told news agency PTI.
Indian High Commissioner to the UK Gaitri Issar Kumar said that the Indian mission in London has kept the pressure over this issue on.
“In the High Commission, the assessment is that the extradition has been decided, the only thing is this remaining legal process which they are duty bound to do because it is a judicial process,” she said.
Vijay Mallya's bankruptcy case will be heard in London's High Court on Monday, 25 July. A consortium of Indian banks, led by the State Bank of India (SBI), are pursuing a bankruptcy order against the former businessman to recoup unpaid loans.
Foreign Secretary Shringla confirmed that the first UK-India Consular Dialogue is scheduled for September, which will discusss a wide range of consular issues, including easier student visa processes.
“The first Consular Dialogue between the UK and India will take place in September. There are a number of consular issues, which is bound to be when there is so much people to people connect,” he told PTI.
He spoke about reminding the UK about a quick decision in the case of economic offenders like Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi, while adding that criminals like Jayesh Patel were still in custody in the UK and needed to be deported to India at the earliest.
Nirav Modi is seeking permission to challenge his extradition at the High Court in London, while Jayesh Patel has appealed against his extradition at Westminster Magistrates' Court since his arrest in March this year. Patel, who is wanted for murder charges and fifty other criminal offences, was arrested in London following a request by Gujarat Police.
(With inputs from PTI)