FUNNY TALE: UK home secretary issues extradition order on Vijay Mallya, but he can appeal against the order within 14 days –which he’s sure to do.


NEW DELHI: In a development that does not raise much hope, UK home secretary Sajid Javid — a Pakistani-origin British citizen — on Monday gave his nod for liquor baron and failed aviation mogul, Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India to face criminal charges or defrauding banks of huge amounts. Mallya, who ran away from India some time ago bag and baggage and settled down in the UK, is also facing charges of money laundering and violation of foreign exchange management Act (FEMA). 

While home secretary’s nod came after the Westminster Magistrate’s Court had, on December 9, ordered Mallya’s extradition. Now, Mallya can appeal against the decision of the home secretary within 14 days. In case no appeal is made –which is unlikely — he can be extradited to India within 28 days. 

Sixtytwo-year-old Mallya is in the UK for the past two years, legally challenging various attempts by the Indian government to get him back to India to face trial and recover more than Rs 9000crore he owes to various banks. Mallya went into debt due mainly to the collapse of his Kingfisher airlines. He left India for UK in March 2016. India sought his extradition in February last year. 

It is felt that Mallya would not give up now, he would buy more time, and wait for the Lok Sabha election results. If the Congress returns to power, he would be in a better position to negotiate his way back to India without much harm.  –IHN=NN


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