New Delhi–Two non-bailable warrants (NBWs) were issued on Friday against liquor baron Vijay Mallya by separate Delhi courts in cases of alleged violation of foreign exchange rules and a 2012 dud cheque.
In the cheque-bounce case, the court reissued the NBW.
In the first case, Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sumit Dass issued the NBW after Mallya did not appear in the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA) violation case. The court fixed December 22 for further hearing.
The court was hearing the final arguments in the 2000 case related to alleged violation by Mallya of the erstwhile FERA provision in arranging funds to advertise his company’s liquor products abroad.
On October 4, the Enforcement Directorate told the court that Mallya can obtain emergency travel document to return to India and face the FERA violation case.
The court observed in its three-page order that Mallya failed to obtain the emergency travel documents as he has no intention to return to India.
Mallya on September 9 sought exemption from personal appearance in court and said he is unable to return and face trial as the Indian authorities had suspended his passport.
On July 9, the court asked Mallya to personally appear on September 9, after allowing the Enforcement Directorate’s plea to withdraw the exemption given to him from personal appearance in the case.
The court said Mallya’s plea for exemption from personal appearance was laced with malafide and abuse of the process of law.
Keeping in view his conduct as demonstrated by the previous order sheets, the court said: “… it appears the accused has no regard for the law of the land and no intention to return.”
“In these circumstances, I am of the opinion that coercive steps need to be taken against the accused,” the court said while directing the ED to execute the warrant against Mallya.
The court turned down defence plea for issuance of bailable warrant first against Mallya instead of the NBW.
The court also took into account various criminal proceedings against Mallya.
In the dishonoured cheque case, Metropolitan Magistrate Sumeet Anand issued the fresh NBW and listed the matter for February 4, 2017, for further hearing.
On August 6 too, the court had issued the NBW and directed the Ministry of External Affairs to send it to Mallya as he is reportedly in London.
Earlier, the trial court issued summons to Mallya on a complaint by Delhi International Airport Ltd, which operates Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport, claiming a cheque for Rs 1 crore issued by the now-grounded Kingfisher Airlines on February 22, 2012, was returned a month later by the bank with “funds insufficient” remark.
DIAL filed four cases in June 2012 against Mallya after KFA’s cheques totalling Rs 7.5 crore were allegedly dishonoured. The KFA had issued the cheques towards payment for services availed by it at the IGI Airport. (IANS)