CBI expands probe against Vijay Mallya’s Kingfisher Airlines
The CBI has expanded its probe against liquor baron Vijay Mallya’s Kingfisher Airlines (KFL), deciding to examine the grounded carrier’s alleged defaults on loans worth Rs 6,100 crore from 16 more public sector banks since 2004.india Updated: Mar 18, 2016 01:42 IST
The CBI has expanded its probe against liquor baron Vijay Mallya’s Kingfisher Airlines (KFL), deciding to examine the grounded carrier’s alleged defaults on loans worth Rs 6,100 crore from 16 more public sector banks since 2004.
So far, the agency was probing KFL’s defaults on loans worth Rs 900 crore from IDBI bank that was taken during October-November of 2009. The CBI had registered an FIR to probe the IDBI case in July 2015, naming Mallya, KFL, the firm’s then chief financial officer A Raghunathan and unknown bank officials.
The CBI’s probe’s expansion came a week after it came to light that Mallya left the country on March 2 for the United Kingdom.
A revised ‘Look Out Circular’ issued by the Bureau of Immigration last November had mandated only furnishing of information on Mallya’s foreign travel to the CBI. “The CBI never said it had wanted to arrest Mallya. If and when the time comes, CBI may seek his interrogation and arrest,” an official source said.
“The CBI has decided to expand the probe against Vijay Mallya by including loan defaults by KFL involving 16 more public sector banks, apart from IDBI,” said the source.
Around 60% of the banking transactions connected to the use, transfer and alleged diversion of the Rs 7,000 crore loans involved “remittances sent abroad”, the official said on condition of anonymity.
The CBI is seeking information on these overseas transactions --- numbering three lakh out of a total of five lakh transactions --- on aspects including the nature of the end-use and end-recipients, said the source.
“The three lakh overseas transactions involve four countries. We have sought details from the four countries through channels, other than judicial or diplomatic. At a later stage, we will send formal requests or Letters Rogatories to the four countries.”
The source declined to reveal the names of the four countries due to the “sensitive, ongoing probe”.
The CBI indicated it knew of Mallya’s current location. “We know. Let’s say, CBI knows what it needs,” the official said.