Vijay Mallya's offer: Take half and settle
The offer made by the liquor baron is nearly half of the R9,000 crore he owes a consortium of Indian banks; Supreme Court has given the banks a week to respond
New Delhi: Facing legal proceedings for alleged default of loans worth over R9,000 crore from various banks, liquor baron Vijay Mallya yesterday expressed willingness in Supreme Court for a settlement by offering a proposal to pay back R4,000 crore by September this year.
The proposal submitted in a sealed envelope however covers a loan amount of R6,903 crore, a senior advocate appearing for the consortium of banks led by State Bank of India, said. He said the proposal also mentions an additional amount of over R2,000 crore on the basis of a pending suit filed by Mallya’s businesses, but did not give details of the lawsuit.
The proposal was placed jointly by Mallya and his companies — Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, United Breweries (Holdings) Ltd and Kingfisher Finvest (India) Ltd. A bench comprising Justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman allowed the consortium of banks a week’s time to respond to the proposal and posted the matter for further hearing on April 7.
At the outset, senior advocate C S Vaidyanathan, appearing for Kingfisher and Mallya, submitted that they have given a proposal to the consortium of banks as to what can be done under the given circumstances. Vaidyanathan requested the bench that the proposal should be kept in a sealed cover, as negotiations were on and media hype could vitiate the atmosphere. He said the proposal has been prepared after discussions with Mallya, currently in United Kingdom, through video conferencing.
Lenders to defunct Kingfisher Airlines yesterday said they have received an offer to settle loans from the company and they will examine the proposal. "The consortium of banks led by SBI confirms receipt of an offer for settlement of dues from Kingfisher Airlines Ltd. The bank, along with other consortium members, will examine the same," SBI said in a statement. The statement, however, did not disclose the amount Mallya has offered to repay the banks.