Loan Fraud Case: Delhi-based Choudhary Aviation Firm Buys Vijay Mallya's Two Choppers in E-auction

Who goes to attend a meeting with "300 bags", the Enforcement Directorate (ED) asked Vijay Mallya's lawyer in a special court here Wednesday, countering the claim that the liquor baron had left India in March 2016 only to attend an event in Geneva and did not flee the country.

Bengaluru, Sep 20: Delhi-based Choudhary Aviation Facilities Ltd had bought two helicopters of fugitive business tycoon Vijay Mallya in an e-auction conducted by the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT-II) here, a company official said on Wednesday.

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"Our company bought the two personal copters of Mallya for Rs 8.75 crore at the price of Rs 4.37 crore each in the electronic bidding conducted by the DRT in Bengaluru," Choudhary Aviation Director Satyendra Sehrawat told IANS from Delhi on phone.

The Tribunal held the e-auction on behalf of a consortium of 17 banks which filed the case in 2013 against Mallya and his defunct Kingfisher Airlines Ltd for defaulting on loans borrowed from 2007-2012.

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"Though the 5-seater Airbus Eurocopter B155 choppers are 10-year-old, they are in a serviceable condition, with a good dual engine and are currently parked at Juhi airport in Mumbai," said Sehrawat.

Three firms participated in the auction, held with the minimum bid price of Rs 1.75 crore for each copter of model 2008, last flown in 2013.

"We want to make use of the choppers for commercial activity, including chartered service," Sehrawat noted. The 3-year-old firm also provides ground operations and air ambulance service to hospitals in the national capital region (NCR). The Tribunal, however, did not inform the media about the e-auction.