SC sentences Vijay Mally to four-month jail for contempt of court

  • In 2017, the SC had held Mallya guilty of contempt of court for withholding information about transferring $40 million to his children, violating the court's order

Priyanka Gawande
First Published11 Jul 2022
Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya.
Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya.(ANI)

Mumbai: The Supreme Court on Monday sentenced fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya to four months imprisonment and imposed a penalty of 2,000 on him for contempt of court. It also said that failure to pay such a fine will lead to an extension of imprisonment by two months.

The Supreme Court has asked Mallya and his family to return the $40 million, plus an interest of 8%, transferred to his children. In case there is a failure to pay the amount, a recovery officer will be entitled to take action and the government will extend the necessary support in recovery.

In 2017, the SC had held Mallya guilty of contempt of court for withholding information about transferring $40 million to his children, violating the court's order. Mallya is wanted in India on fraud and money laundering charges.

While imposing a penalty, the top court said "We have said in the judgement of 2017 that the action of contemnor in disbursing USD 40 million was contempt. We must impose adequate sentence on the contemnor to uphold the majesty of law and the amounts in dispute are available for execution”

“Vijay Mallya did not show any remorse and therefore it was necessary to impose a punishment to uphold the majesty of law”, the bench added.

Meanwhile, Vijay Mallya, who is based in Britain for over five years, is pursuing appeals in the UK courts in an attempt to overturn a bankruptcy order imposed on him by the High Court in London in July last year.

At a case management hearing at the Chancery Division of the High Court in London on Monday, Justice Tom Leech concluded that a set of interlinked hearings in the matter would be heard together.

The case, which involves a consortium of Indian banks led by the State Bank of India (SBI) seeking the repayment of an estimated judgment debt of around GBP 1.05 billion owed by the now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines, is now likely to come up in the courts next year.

The 66-year-old businessman remains on bail in the UK while a “confidential" legal matter believed to be related to an asylum application is resolved in connection with the unrelated extradition proceedings.

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