New Delhi: Fugitive tycoon Vijay Mallya on Thursday rejected that his offer to pay all dues to banks was linked to the extradition of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland chopper deal.
Once again urging the banks to “please take money”, Mallya said he wanted to end the narrative that he stole money.
“Respectfully to all commentators, I cannot understand how my extradition decision or the recent extradition from Dubai and my settlement offer are linked in any way. Wherever I am physically, my appeal is ‘Please take the money’,” he tweeted.
The liquor baron had made the same fervent appeal in a series of tweets on Wednesday morning, asking banks to accept his offer to pay back 100% of the principal loan amount, while denying that the move was linked to the extradition proceedings against him.
The tweets had come just hours after alleged AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal middleman Christian Michel was brought to India from Dubai, the first successful extradition since India initiated similar proceedings against economic offenders like Mallya, Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi.
Speaking to CNN-News18, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the trio would soon follow Michel.
Urging banks to accept his offer, Mallya maintained that the huge loans he took from banks went into keeping his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines afloat despite high jet fuel prices. Mallya also claimed that his vast liquor empire, the United Breweries, contributed “handsomely” to state exchequers.
“Politicians and Media are constantly talking loudly about my being a defaulter who has run away with PSU Bank money. All this is false. Why don’t I get fair treatment and the same loud noise about my comprehensive settlement offer before the Karnataka High Court. Sad (sic),” he said.
As speculation mounted on the timing of Mallya’s tweets following Michel’s extradition, the liquor baron said, “I see the quick media narrative about my extradition decision. That is separate and will take its own legal course…”
Mallya left India on March 2, 2016, and faces charges of defrauding banks to the tune of Rs 9,000 crore. He is currently in London where a court finished hearing on India's extradition case against him in September this year and is due to pronounce its verdict on December 10.