Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya, who has set off a fresh controversy by claiming in London that he had “met the Finance Minister” before leaving India in 2016 and “repeated my offer to settle with the banks”, currently faces at least 27 cases in various courts, including 22 relating to loan default. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has dismissed Mallya’s claim as “factually false”. In 2016, Jaitley had said that the loan default by Kingfisher Airlines stood at Rs 9,091.40 crore at the end of November 2015.
A breakup of default amounts reported in The Indian Express in 2016 shows that the highest dues were to State Bank of India (Rs 1,600 crore).
In 2014, United Bank of India announced that Mallya is a “wilful defaulter”. SBI and Punjab National Bank followed suit. In 2015, the service tax department took up non-payment of service tax of over Rs 115 crore by Kingfisher Airlines. On March 7, 2016, the department moved Bombay High Court, asking for impounding of Mallya’s passport and seeking his presence in the ongoing court case. The airline had also defaulted on crediting over Rs 372 crore of income-tax deducted at source from employees.
In 2016, the Enforcement Directorate also registered a money laundering case against Mallya and a few IDBI Bank officials. In January last year, the CBI filed a chargesheet against Kingfisher Airlines, Vijay Mallya and others, in which it had claimed that IDBI Bank officials did not take any legal opinion on whether an “intangible asset” such as the brand value of Kingfisher could be kept as collateral against the over Rs 900-crore loan granted to the company.