A day after a UK judge refused to dismiss an order freezing nearly 260,000 pounds (USD 337,730) in one of his London bank accounts, embattled liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya on Thursday questioned the SBI-led consortium of public sector banks pursuing him through the courts to recover dues they claim are owed to them.
In his latest Twitter intervention, the 63-year-old former Kingfisher Airlines boss made another reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's interview last month in which he had claimed that the government has recovered assets worth Rs 14,000 crores related to the now-defunct airline's loan defaults.
Mallya is wanted in India on charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to an alleged Rs 9,000 crores."None other than the Prime Minister of India specifically says in an interview that his government has recovered more money than I allegedly owe PSU Banks and the same banks claim otherwise in English courts," reads Mallya's Tweet."Who does one believe? One or the other is lying," he said.
His statement came hours after Master David Cook, a judge in the Queen's Bench Division of the Royal Courts of Justice in London, ruled on Wednesday that an interim debt order in favour of SBI and other banks seeking access to funds in Mallya's ICICI UK bank account "should remain in force".
However, the application to make it final has been adjourned until after the hearing of Mallya's pending bankruptcy petition, expected by the end of this year.The funds held in the account -258,559.79 pounds - will meanwhile remain frozen as part of the worldwide freezing order in favour of the Indian banks last year.