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Vijay Mallya: ED moves court to seize assets worth Rs 12,500 crore

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Today India made a noticeable move regarding the big bank loan defaulters case of Vijay Mallya because of the introduction of new law. Enforcement Directorate (ED) moved court against liquor baron Vijay Mallya seeking to declare him a ‘fugitive offender’ and to confiscate his assets worth Rs 12,500 crore.

An application was filed by the central probe agency before a special court in Mumbai, under the recently circulated Fugitive Economic Offenders Ordinance, that licenses it to seize “all linked assets” of an absconding loan defaulter.

“confiscate all the properties of Vijay Mallya including those properties indirectly controlled by him”, said the application accessed by PTI in ED’s attempt to find Mallya.

The application said the “estimated value of properties proposed for confiscation is to the tune of Rs 12,500 crore approximately, which includes immovable properties as well as movable properties in form of shares.”

The movement has been initiated in attempt of two bank loan money laundering cases of over Rs 9,000 crore involving the IDBI bank and a SBI-led consortium and these became ground offence for the latest action under the Ordinance brought by the Modi government early this year.

In the application ED claimed prominent evidences that it filed as part of its two charge sheets against Mallya and others under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and stated that in both cases, non-bailable warrants have been issued against Mallya by the court.

Well this case is the first one empowered to execute this Ordinance in the country, and the agency said that they will soon undertake the same action against absconding designer diamond jeweller Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, accused in the USD 2 billion PNB fraud case, apart from other such big bank loan defaulters.

There have been a lot of scams due to such offenders who feel privileged in vested interest and fleeing the jurisdiction of Indian courts, predicting the the commencement or during the pending time of criminal proceedings.

It alleged that a “criminal conspiracy was hatched from inception” by Mallya and his firms to obtain loans in “gross violation” of established procedures.

The investigation has revealed several instance of moving funds at the requirement and for the benefit of Mallya through Ms Kingfisher Airlines.

The agency said it has attached assets worth over Rs 8,040 crore of Mallya and others under the PMLA in the past.

Two criminal complaints were filed by the ED in these instances after taking cognisance of CBI FIRs.

Mallya is contesting the money laundering charges in London as part of India’s efforts to extradite him from there and face the legal system here in connection with an alleged loan default of over Rs 9,000 crore of various banks.

As per the existing process of law under the PMLA, the ED could seize the assets only after the trial in a case finishes which usually takes many years.