Liquor baron Vijay Mallya was on Thursday granted anticipatory bail by a local court in a criminal complaint filed against him by Bangalore International Airport Limited for non-payment of User Development Fees and passenger service to it by his cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines.
The Fast Track Court at Devanahalli on the city outskirts where the airport is located asked Mallya not to tamper with evidence, while granting him the relief.
An FIR was filed on October 25 against Mallya and four others at BIAL police station on a direction by a magistrate court here, where BIAL had filed the complaint on October 21.
In its private criminal complaint, BIAL has sought action under IPC Sections including 403 (dishonest misappropriation of property), 406 (criminal breach of trust), 418 (cheating) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) with a direction to police to probe the matter.
BIAL has contended that Kingfisher Airlines had collected UDF and passenger service fees from domestic and international passengers during 2008-12, but after initial stage did not remit the money to BIAL as required under a Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) directive.
The DGCA circular of September 22, 2008 said private airlines should collect user development fees and passenger service fees and remit it to the airport operator. According to BIAL, Kingfisher Airlines owes them about Rs 208 crore.
Hit by financial woes, Kingfisher Airlines has been grounded for the past one year.