STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

SBI Blames Holidays for Delay in Moving Courts Against Mallya

SBI refuted allegation that banks were late in taking action against Kingfisher airline and its promoter Vijay Mallya.

Published: 10th March 2016 10:53 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th March 2016 10:53 PM   |  A+A-

By PTI

MUMBAI: State Bank of India, which leads a consortium of 17 lenders of Kingfisher Airlines, today refuted the allegation that the banks were late in taking action against the airline and its promoter Vijay Mallya.

The statement comes amidst the uproar in Parliament today over Mallya leaving the country. Kingfisher owes the banks over Rs 9,000 crore.

There were media reports that SBI, advised by a Delhi-based law firm to move the Supreme Court, High Courts or Debt Recovery Tribunals to stop Mallya from going abroad towards the end of last month, didn't act promptly.

"As the leader of the consortium, we strongly deny media reports," SBI said in a statement.

Yesterday the Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi informed the Supreme Court that Mallya left the country on March 2.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has also said banks should have acted earlier to stop Mallya from going abroad, even as he warned of "appropriate action" against those responsible for any "inaction" in recovery of dues.

The Serious Fraud Investigation Office sources told PTI that at their last meeting on February 29 here, Mallya had promised to meet them again on March 4.

Last week, CBI director Anil Sinha had blasted the lenders for not coming forward with a complaint in the Kingfisher Airlines "fraud". This delay helped the company "divert funds and destroy evidence", he had said.

"Despite our repeated requests, the banks did not file a complaint with the CBI. We had to register the case on our own," Sinha said.

SBI today claimed it had moved very promptly. Mallya owes more than Rs 1,600 crore to it.

The lender said the day Diageo announced a USD 75 million sweetheart deal for Mallya to leave United Spirits as chairman on February 26, it moved the DRT Bengaluru for advancement of the matter listed for hearing on March 8.

The DRT advanced the matter to February 29, as February 27 and February 28 were Saturday and Sunday (holidays).

"As senior advocates had advised that it will not be possible to directly approach the Supreme Court for seeking relief in respect of the deal, SBI additionally filed four applications in DRT Bengaluru seeking various reliefs," the bank's statement said.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp