No legal basis for ED action, says Mallya

“Civil matters are being connected with criminal allegations, without any basis whatsoever”

June 12, 2016 10:32 pm | Updated December 03, 2021 12:46 pm IST - Bengaluru:

UB Group Chairman Vijay Mallya said on Sunday that he was deeply pained to learn that the government agencies were planning further unprecedented action against him.

His statement comes a day after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) provisionally attached movable and immovable properties worth R >s.1,411 crore belonging to Mr. Mallya and the United Breweries (Holding) Limited in connection with a money laundering case. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has also constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to further investigate Kingfisher Airlines and Mr. Mallya.

“The assets purportedly attached under Prevention of Money Laundering Act date back several years prior to the launch of Kingfisher Airlines. There is no rationale or any legal basis for the series of actions initiated by the ED, which is now making it more difficult to raise resources to pay the banks,” Mr. Mallya said in a mail. “Purely civil matters such as loan recovery are being connected with criminal allegations without any basis whatsoever,” it said.

‘Only sought time’ He also claimed that the UB Group, of which he was the chairman, had invested over Rs. 6,000 crore in Kingfisher Airlines. He had never refused to appear before the investigation authority, but only sought time to sell assets to pay employees, tax authorities and the banks.

ED writes to Interpol The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has sent a detailed communication, along with legal inputs, to the Interpol which had recently sought “clarifications” from it before notifying an arrest warrant against Mr. Mallya.

The ED said issuing the Red Corner Notice against Mallya was “obligatory” on the part of Interpol as all due legal processes had been followed by the Indian probe agencies to seek such a warrant.

It also informed Interpol that the agency was seeking “proclaimed offender” status for Mr. Mallya. A decision in this regard was expected from a Mumbai court.

Earlier, Interpol had asked the ED to provide certain detailed information on the legal processes undertaken by the agency in the case.

(With inputs from PTI)

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