As Tipu Sultan's Sword Vanishes, is Vijay Mallya 'Dissipating his Assets'?

News18.com
The tycoon, who fled to the UK in March 2016 after being accused of defaulting on bank loans worth Rs 9,000 crore, was reacting to a report in the Economic Times, which quoted an ED official as saying that Mallya was offering a “plea bargain, which will not work in our country.”

New Delhi: The personal sword of Tipu Sultan, ruler of Mysore from 1782 to 1799, has vanished and no one knows where it’s gone.

It is alleged that liquor baron Vijay Mallya gave it away in 2016 as his family said "it brought bad luck". Mallya had bought it for Rs 1.5 crore at a private auction in 2004.

The lawyer representing 13 Indian banks whom Mallya owes about Rs 9,000 crore, told the London high court on Tuesday that the sword is worth about Rs 1.8 crore in market value today. The lawyer, taking this example, said the banks are at risk of Mallya “dissipating his assets”.

The banks are attempting to convince the court that the freeze order on Mallya’s global assets should not be discharged.

Mallya’s lawyer, however, set the value of the sword against the millions owed to the banks to argue that it was insufficient to justify the allegation that Mallya would hide or dispose of his assets.

Mallya has repeatedly refused to appear before courts and investigators in India since he secretly fled to Britain in March, 2016, after defaulting on loan payments to state-owned banks and allegedly misusing the funds.