The British government has signed an order to extradite Indian liquor and aviation tycoon Vijay Mallya, the UK’s Home Office said in a statement on Monday.
“On 3 February the Secretary of State, having carefully considered all relevant matters, signed the order for Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India,” said a UK Home Office spokesperson.
The order follows a London court’s ruling in December that Mallya, who moved to Britain in March 2016, be extradited to India to face fraud charges. Mallya now has 14 days to appeal to the UK High Court.
“After the decision was handed down on December 10, 2018 by the Westminster Magistrates Court, I stated my intention to appeal. I could not initiate the appeal process before a decision by the Home Secretary. Now I will initiate the appeal process,” Mallya tweeted late on Monday.
Arun Jaitley, who is currently undergoing treatment in US, said it was another step to get Mallya home. He further contrasted the situation with the one playing out in Bengal, where CM Mamata Banerjee is sitting on dharna against the CBI for questioning the Kolkata Police commissioner in the Saradha chit fund scam.
“Modi Government clears one more step to get Mallya extradited while Opposition rallies around the Saradha Scamsters,” Jaitley tweeted.
“We have taken note of the decision of the UK Home Secretary to sign on the order for Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India. While we welcome the UK Government’s decision in the matter, we await the early completion of the legal process for his extradition,” said a source in Indian intelligentsia.
The 63-year-old businessman had been found to have a case to answer before the Indian courts by Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on December 10, 2018. Mallya left India on March 2, 2016 after defaulting on loan amounting to Rs 9,000 crore he had taken for his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines.