Liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya was on Wednesday denied permission to attraction towards a UK Excessive Courtroom order refusing to dismiss chapter proceedings introduced by a consortium of Indian banks led by the State Financial institution of India (SBI), in their pursuit of debt associated to his now-defunct Kingfisher Airways. The 65-year-old businessman, who stays on bail in the UK, had filed a renewed software to attraction towards UK court docket orders in the case from final 12 months, which had allowed for an adjournment of chapter proceedings till the debt difficulty earlier than the Supreme Courtroom in India was determined upon.
His counsel, Philip Marshall, argued that the banks’ chapter petition must be dismissed quite than simply adjourned because the debt in query was disputed and being deliberated upon in the Indian courts. Whereas this was a brand new level [before the appellate court], I don’t settle for it as an inexpensive floor for attraction because the matter could be handled throughout proceedings which can be nonetheless persevering with, mentioned Justice Colin Birss, throughout a distant listening to of the Chancery Appeals Division of the Excessive Courtroom in London.
Mallya’s barrister additionally raised the difficulty of “abuse of course of” by the banks in their alleged non-disclosure of securities held in India and the existence of third-party safety in the type of property associated to United Breweries Holdings. The choose reiterated that he had dismissed each these as enough grounds of attraction in a ruling he handed down on paper in December final 12 months.
There is no such thing as a prospect of success of an attraction primarily based on this floor, though this doesn’t preclude reliance on it [third-party security] later, the choose dominated. The listening to varieties a part of a collection being heard by the Excessive Courtroom for the reason that SBI-led consortium of 13 Indian banks had initiated the proceedings towards Mallya in December 2018 as a part of their efforts to recoup round 1.145 billion kilos in unpaid loans.
Either side have deposed retired Indian Supreme Courtroom justices as professional witnesses on Indian legislation in help of their arguments for and towards a chapter order towards Mallya in the UK. Whereas the banks argue a proper to waive their safety over the Indian property concerned in the case in order to recuperate their debt in the UK, legal professionals for Mallya argue that the funds in query concerned public cash held by state-owned banks in India which precluded them from such a safety waiver.
The following listening to to conclude closing submissions in the case is scheduled to be heard at a yet-to-be-agreed date in the approaching weeks. In parallel, Mallya’s legal professionals have additionally been making use of to the court docket in order for him to meet his appreciable and mounting authorized prices from monies held with the Courtroom Funds Workplace (CFO) as a part of the chapter proceedings.
Within the final listening to associated to prices on Monday, Decide Sebastian Prentis on the Insolvency and Firms Courtroom (ICC) division of the Excessive Courtroom had agreed solely to permit enough funds to cowl the listening to on Wednesday. The problem of funds held by the court docket will now be totally handled at a listening to listed earlier than the Excessive Courtroom on January 22, throughout which it will likely be determined whether or not to sanction sums in the direction of residing bills and authorized charges from the sale of a French luxurious property Le Grand Jardin final 12 months.
In the meantime, the separate proceedings associated to the previous Kingfisher Airways chief being extradited to India to face expenses of fraud and cash laundering stay held up by a confidential authorized matter.