'Didn't show any remorse, adequate punishment must': SC on Vijay Mallya
Fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya has been in the UK since March 2016. He is on bail on an extradition warrant executed by the Scotland Yard on April 18, 2017.
The Supreme Court on Monday sentenced fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya to four months jail term and a fine of ₹2000 under contempt charge. "Adequate punishment is a must. Mallya didn't show any remorse," the top court bench said.
The Supreme Court also ordered Mallya's family members to return USD 40 million transferred to them in violation of the court orders.
The Supreme Court bench comprising justices UU Lalit, S Ravindra Bhat and PS Narasimha on March 10 had reserved its order in the case observing that proceedings against the liquor baron had hit a ‘dead wall’.
After hearing senior advocate and amicus curiae Jaideep Gupta on various aspects, the top court had even decided to permit the counsel, who was earlier representing Mallya to file written submissions if any by March 15.
Mallya's counsel had on March 10 told the bench that he was handicapped in the absence of any instruction from his client, who is in the United Kingdom, and would not be able to argue on the quantum of sentence to be awarded in the contempt case.
The Supreme Court had said that it has given multiple opportunities to Mallya to appear either personally or through a lawyer and had even given specific directions on November 30 last year.
A consortium of banks led by the State Bank of India had moved the top court alleging that Mallya was not following the court orders on repayment of loan worth over ₹9,000 crore.
It was alleged that he was not disclosing the assets and moreover, transferring them to his children in violation of the restraint orders.
Mallya was held guilty of contempt in 2017, and the matter was thereafter to be listed to hear him on the proposed punishment to be awarded to him.
The top court had in 2020 dismissed Mallya's plea seeking review of the 2017 verdict which held him guilty of contempt for transferring USD 40 million to his children in violation of court orders.
Mallya has been in the UK since March 2016. He is on bail on an extradition warrant executed by the Scotland Yard on April 18, 2017.