The Bombay High Court on Friday directed the Service Tax department to complete the process of re-auction and sale of businessman Vijay Mallya’s private aircraft by December 15 this year. Mallya’s aircraft has been parked at the airport here pending auction due to recovery of Service Tax dues.
A division bench of Justices S C Dharmadhikari and B P Colabawala said immediate steps have to be taken by the department to complete the procedure of auction and sale.
“The aircraft has just been dumped at the airport. You (Service Tax department) are just buying time. Complete everything by December 15. Expedite the process so that the aircraft is lifted from that space (airport) immediately. We expect the aircraft to be auctioned and sold expeditiously by December 15,” the court directed.
The bench was hearing a petition filed by the department seeking recall of the auction sale of Mallya’s personal jet as the highest bidder had bid only 80 per cent of the plane’s total cost.
The court has posted the petition for further hearing on December 20.
Mallya’s plane Airbus 319 which can carry 25 passengers and about 6 crew members, had been attached by the department.
In May this year, the department had issued a notice advertising the auction and described the airbus as designed “exclusively for exotic and luxurious use”.
The aircraft has conference halls, meeting rooms and a bedroom with an attached bath.