If latest reports are to be believed than fugitive liquor and airline tycoon Vijay Mallya, who has sought insolvency is actually living off his partner, Pinky Lalwani, his personal assistant, a business acquaintance and children, according to London High Court that heard his case on April 3.
As per the court’s hearing, Mallya’s “partner/wife Pinky Lalwani earns in excess of £150,000 (about Rs 1.35 crore) a year and that the former billionaire has just £328 million (Rs 2,956 crore) left in personal assets, all of which he has put towards his settlement offer in the Karnataka high court.”
Mallya’s woes don’t end here. He faces another legal battle to prevent a consortium of Indian banks led by State Bank of India (SBI) to get access to nearly 260,000 pounds in a UK bank account.
A spokesperson for TLT LLP, the law firm representing the Indian banks said that “the hearing concerns an interim third-party debt order obtained by the banks in January and relates to funds worth just short of 260,000 pounds in Dr Mallya’s current account with ICICI Bank in London.”
“This is part of the banks’ ongoing efforts to enforce the [Indian] Debt Recovery Tribunal judgment against Dr Mallya in the UK. Dr Mallya is opposing the application and asking that the court discharges the interim order. If it is made final, the funds will be released to the banks,” the spokesperson explained.
SBI along with 12 other Indian banks such as Bank of Baroda, Corporation bank, Federal Bank Ltd, IDBI Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, Jammu & Kashmir Bank, Punjab & Sind Bank, Punjab National Bank, State Bank of Mysore, UCO Bank, United Bank of India and JM Financial Asset Reconstruction Co Pvt Ltd are trying to recover some of the funds owed to them by him. This is a result of unpaid loans by Mallya’s now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines.
In May last year, a UK High Court judge had refused to overturn a worldwide order freezing Mallya’s assets and upheld an Indian court’s ruling that the consortium of 13 Indian banks was entitled to recover funds amounting to nearly 1.145 billion pounds.
John Brisby QC, his lawyer, told the court that Mallya was willing to take a cut in his weekly living allowance and receive £29,500 (Rs 26.57 lakh) a month from the earlier £18,000 (Rs 16.21 lakh) a week.
“He cannot on any view satisfy judgment of £1.1 billion. He is insolvent,” Brisby told the court.