Vijay Mallya says he met Finance Minister before leaving India; Arun Jaitley refutes claim
LONDON: Embattled liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya said Wednesday he met the Finance Minister before leaving India.
The 62-year-old former Kingfisher Airline boss, who arrived to appear before the Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, told reporters that he had met the minister and offered to settle the issue with the banks.
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"I left India because I had a scheduled meeting in Geneva. Before leaving I met the finance minister and offered to settle (the issue with the banks), Mallya said, without naming the minister.
Arun Jaitley was the Finance Minister in 2016 when Mallya left India.
Taking to Facebook, Arun Jaitley refuted the media reports and said that since 2014 he has never given Mallya any appointment to meet him
The Finance minister on Facebook wrote: "The statement is factually false in as much as it does not reflect truth. Since 2014, I have never given him any appointment to meet me and the question of his having met me does not arise. However, since he was a Member of Rajya Sabha and he occasionally attended the House, he misused that privilege on one occasion while I was walking out of the House to go to my room. He paced up to catch up with me and while walking uttered a sentence that ”I am making an offer of settlement”. Having been fully briefed about his earlier “bluff offers”, without allowing him to proceed with the conversation, I curtly told him “there was no point talking to me and he must make offers to his bankers.” I did not even receive the papers that he was holding in his hand. Besides this one sentence exchange where he misused his privilege as a Rajya Sabha Member, in order to further his commercial interest as a bank debtor, there is no question of my having ever given him an appointment to meet me."