Vijay Mallya siphoned off nearly Rs 430 crore from IDBI loan to buy property abroad

NEW DELHI: Vijay Mallya has invested about half of the Rs 900-crore-plus loan taken from IDBI Bank, the Enforcement Directorate told a special court on Saturday, a Hindustan Times report has said.

This is being touted as the first concrete allegation against the businessman amid the multiple cases against him from various judiciary agencies for the default of over Rs 9,000-crore loans.

This is the same Rs 940 crore loan that the liquor baron has defaulted on and is being tried by the Enforcement directorate. However, after failing to appear after three summons from the ED, the maximum allowed under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), the agency is now seeking a non-bailable arrest warrant against him. The court has reserved the order till Monday.

According to the report, about Rs 430 crore of the IDBI loan was taken out of the country under the pretext of aircraft rent, spare parts import, maintenance services, and so on, the report said. However, by tracking a money trail, the agency has come to the conclusion that several payments were made by Mallya to entities not connected to the now-grounded Kingfisher Airlines, it added.

The HT report also quotes ED counsel Hiten Venegaonkar saying that the money may have also been used to buy a property outside India or invested in tax havens.

The ED, after examining various documents, said that it has traced major recipients of the money along with their bank accounts.

The Ministry of External Affairs is now seeking the revocation of Mallya’s diplomatic passport too.