In a major development on 14 May, the High Court of Justice, London, UK, rejected the application dated 29 April of Vijay Mallya seeking permission to appeal to the UK Supreme Court against its order dated 20 April.
Vide order dated 20 April, a Division Bench of UK High Court had dismissed Mallya’s appeal against the lower court order recommending his Extradition to face trial in India.
The decision of the UK High Court to order the extradition of Mallya is a Milestone in CBI’s quest for excellence and a reminder that economic offenders, facing probes in large value frauds, cannot consider themselves as above the process merely because they have changed jurisdictions.
The judgement also vindicates the painstaking investigation by CBI, especially since Mallya had raised various issues with regard to the admissibility of evidence, the fairness of investigation itself and extraneous consideration, with a view to divert attention from his own acts.
The extradition of Vijay Mallya was sought to face trial in RC BSM 2015 E0006 for offences of cheating, criminal conspiracy and abuse of official position by public servants, wherein Mallya faced allegations of conspiring with public servants and dishonestly defrauding the IDBI bank to the extent of Rs 900 crore.
On conclusion of the investigation, a charge sheet against Mallya and others was filed on 24 January 2017, which was followed by a request for extradition of Mallya on 31 January 2017. Based on the request, Vijay Mallya was arrested by UK authorities on 20 April 2017.
In a complex legal battle, stretching from April 2017 to May, the CBI contested the extradition case in Westminster Magistrate’s Court and the UK High Court of Justice to satisfy the courts on various aspects of extradition and to establish the existence of a prima facie case against Mallya as well as to convince the courts about the compliance of ECHR norms with regard to prison conditions and Human Rights.
Vide order dated 10 December 2018, the Senior District Judge ruled in favour of government of India and recommended extradition of Mallya to the Secretary of State. The appeal filed by Mallya was thereafter dismissed by the UK High Court on 5 April 2019 on all 5 grounds.
The application of Mallya for renewal of the said appeal was permitted only on one ground i.e. ‘prima facie case’ and the other 4 grounds were rejected, vide order dated 2 July 2019. The ground of prima facie case was heard by a Division Bench of UK High Court in February 2020 and was decided in favour of the government of India vide order dated 20 April.
CBI appreciates the painstaking investigation, the hard work and the meticulous efforts of Investigating Officer Shri Suman Kumar, Additional SP, CBI in successfully pursuing investigation and extradition proceedings against the fugitive.
CBI acknowledges the painstaking and continuous efforts made by the counsels of Crown Prosecution service in forcefully presenting the Indian case and also the efforts of various government agencies, especially the officers of High Commission of India, London, Ministry of Home Affairs and Prisons Department, Government of Maharashtra in coordinating the extradition trial, timely submission of pieces of evidence and assurances and prompt follow up of the case at all stages.