New Delhi: Embattled liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya, who has been ordered to be extradited to India by a UK court, Thursday congratulated Congress leaders Sachin Pilot and Jyotiraditya Scindia over the party’s wins in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh assembly polls.
Mallya, who had accused politicians and the media of making him a ‘poster boy’ of bank default while presenting himself as the victim of a witch hunt, took to Twitter to congratulate the two young leaders of Congress, which defeated the ruling BJP in the assembly elections.
“Young Champions @SachinPilot and @JM_Scindia Many congratulations,” he tweeted. On Monday, Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London had concluded that the “flashy billionaire” does have a case to answer in the Indian courts over substantial “misrepresentations” of his financial dealings.
In a major boost to India’s efforts to bring back the businessman wanted for alleged bank fraud and money laundering amounting to an estimated Rs 9,000 crore, Chief Magistrate Judge Emma Arbuthnot had said there was a prima facie case against Mallya.
Appearing to be undeterred by the development, he also took a potshot at the Enforcement Directorate (ED) over a report that the investigative agency asked his lawyers ‘who goes to attend a meeting with 300 bags?’ while countering claims that he did not flee India in March 2016 but went to attend an event in Geneva.
“Next the ED will say that I chartered the Jet Airways 777!” Mallya said in a retweet of the link to the report. Under India’s extradition treaty with the UK, the sign off on the extradition order is made by the UK home secretary, in this case senior British Pakistani minister Sajid Javid, who has two months to formally order the extradition.
Mallya has the right to lodge an appeal in the UK High Court against the Chief Magistrate’s order but that appeal would only be addressed once Javid has made his decision on the extradition order, until which time he remains on the same bail conditions as before.