New Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday rubbished the claims made by Vijay Mallya that he met the former and offered a settlement deal. “The statement is factually false in as much as it does not reflect the truth,” a statement released by the minister read. Also Read - Supreme Court Dismisses Vijay Mallya's Review Plea Against 2017 Contempt Verdict
Earlier in the day, the beleaguered liquor baron told reporters outside London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court, ahead of appearing for hearing in his extradition case, that he did not flee the country with public funds instead he offered a settlement deal to the government. “I met the finance minster to settle matters before I left. The banks had filed objections to my settlement letters,” he had said. Also Read - 'Miss my Friend a Lot,' Says PM Modi on 1st Death Anniversary of Arun Jaitley; Many Political Leaders Pay Tribute
Jaitley, in a statement shared on his Facebook page, clarified, “Since 2014, I have never given him any appointment to meet me and the question of his having met me does not arise.” Adding further, he revealed: “Since he was a Member of Rajya Sabha and he occasionally attended the House, he misused that privilege on one occasion, having been fully briefed about his earlier “bluff offers”, I curtly told him “there was no point talking to me and he must make offers to his bankers.”
The Finance Minister said that he has never given any appointment to Mallya to meet him. “I did not even receive the papers that he was holding in his hand. Besides this one sentence exchange where he misused his privilege as a RS Member to further his commercial interest as a bank debtor, there is no question of my having ever given him an appointment to meet me,” the statement read.
Mallya arrived at a London court on Wednesday for a hearing in his extradition case, during which the judge is expected to review a video of the Mumbai jail cell prepared by the Indian authorities for the embattled liquor tycoon.
During the ongoing hearing, Mallya’s lawyer told the Westminster Magistrates Court that the officials of the IDBI Bank were “well aware of the losses at Kingfisher”.
“IDBI bank officials were well aware of losses at Kingfisher. E-mail from IDBI officials show that govt accusation that Vijay Mallya hid losses, is baseless,” he told the court.
At the previous hearing in July in the Westminster Magistrates’ Court, Judge Emma Arbuthnot had asked the Indian authorities to submit a “step by step video” of the Barrack 12 of Arthur Road Jail for “the avoidance of doubt” over the availability of natural light in the cell where the businessman is expected to be detained pre-trial, during trial and in the event he is convicted by the Indian courts.