Mallya Will Not Appear Before ED, Seeks Another Date in May
This is the second time Mallya has refused to appear before ED after seeking an extension on 18 March
Liquor baron Vijay Mallya will not present himself before ED investigators in Mumbai on Saturday even as he sought time till May to depose before the agency which is probing his role in a money laundering case in the over Rs 900 crore IDBI loan fraud case.
The investigating officer of the case at ED’s Mumbai zonal office has been informed by Mallya that he will not be able to keep the scheduled date of 2 April and that he should be given a fresh date, sometime in the month of May. It is understood that Mallya has informed the IO that cases related to bank loans are currently ongoing in the Supreme Court and he is trying to settle these loans with the help of his legal and corporate team and, hence, would require some more time.
It is also learnt that while ED is mulling options for its next action, it may not be “too keen” to accede to his request given the “gravity” of the PMLA case.
His personal appearance is important to unravel the alleged irregularities reported to have been done in the IDBI loan fraud case. Money laundering offences probe are serious. Also, under PMLA, the onus to prove not guilty is on the accused and not on the investigating agencySources
The agency, by and large, has two options, either to agree and issue him a third date or undertake steps to possibly take legal action for revoking his passport.
Mallya was first summoned by the central probe agency to “appear in person” at its office in the Ballard Pier area of the western metropolis on March 18 but after he sought more time citing his prior engagements, the agency asked him to depose on 2 April.
Mallya and Kingfisher Airlines Ltd HAD on 30 March submitted to the Supreme Court in a sealed cover a proposal for repayment of Rs 4,000 crore out of the loan amount of Rs 6,903 crore to the consortium of banks led by State Bank of India by September this year.
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