New Delhi: The Central government on Tuesday informed the Supreme Court that the extradition of fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya to India from the United Kingdom has attained finality, but certain “confidential proceedings” are pending in the UK. “Mallya has already exhausted all his avenues of appeal in the UK”, the government told the apex court. Mallya, an accused in a bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines, is in the UK since March 2016. He is on bail on an extradition warrant executed three years ago by Scotland Yard on April 18, 2017.Also Read - Jailed Samajwadi Party Leader Azam Khan Approaches Supreme Court Seeking Bail to Campaign in UP Elections
“We cannot wait for his extradition to India any longer”, the court said and posted the matter for the hearing on quantum of punishment on Jan 18, 22. Also Read - Supreme Court Judgement: Daughters to Inherit Self-Acquired Properties of Fathers Dying Without a Will
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The Court stated that even if Mallya – who is now in the United Kingdom from where the Indian Government is trying to extradite him- is not present before the Court on that day for any reason, it will hear the counsel on his behalf.
The SC also appointed Senior Advocate Jaideep Gupta as an amicus curiae to assist it in the matter. On an earlier occasion, the Court had rejected the request made by Advocate EC Agarwala seeking his discharge as Mallya’s counsel in the case.
On November 2, last year, the top court had asked the Centre to file a status report in six weeks on the confidential legal proceedings pending in the UK on the extradition of Mallya to India.
The Centre had on October 5 last year told the apex court that Mallya cannot be extradited to India until a separate secret legal process in the UK, which is judicial and confidential in nature is resolved.
The Centre had in October last year said it is not aware of the secret ongoing proceedings against Mallya in the UK as the Government of India is not a party to the process.
The government had earlier informed the apex court in the contempt case that the pending legal issue in the UK is outside and apart from the extradition process and is confidential and cannot be disclosed.
The top court had in October 2020 asked Mallya’s lawyer to apprise the apex court by November 2 last year what kind of “secret” proceedings are going on to extradite him.