Industrialist Vijay Mallya’s private jet, which has been lying unused for years at the city’s airport, has finally been put on sale.
On March 23, the service tax department issued a notice announcing the e-auction of the Airbus 319, which was named VT-VJM — the business tycoon’s initials.
According to the notice, MSTC Limited, a government-run independent company and the service tax department’s official selling agent, will conduct the e-auction.
The tailor-made luxury jet was part of many Kingfisher planes impounded by the service tax department.
The earnest money deposit for the jet for Indian nationals is Rs1 crore and US$ 1.52 lakh (Rs 1.16 crore as on Saturday) for foreign investors, the notice stated.
“The aircraft is a corporate jet with a 25 passenger seating capacity and six crew seating capacity exclusively designed for luxurious use. It has attractive exterior and interior design,” the advertisement read.
According to service tax officials, in addition to Mallya’s private jet, the department had seized five ATR aircraft and two helicopters belonging to the airline in 2013.
While officials from MSTC refused to comment on the number of takers for the aircraft, once a milestone of Mallya’s flamboyant lifestyle, they said it would be available for inspection from April 2. “Information about bidders is a confidential matter. We cannot discuss that,” said SD Yeolekar, regional manager, western region with MSTC Ltd. The auction will be conducted between May 12 and May 13.
This will be the second Kingfisher aircraft to be auctioned. Last year, the Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) had auctioned an 11-seater jet belonging to the defunct airline, which was bought by a Kurla-based scrap dealer for Rs22 lakh. According to sources, the service tax department is planning to recover dues of around Rs600 crore from the airline.