Mallya-Jaitley meeting in Parliament corridors sparks controversy

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The 62-year-old former Kingfisher Airline boss' defence team, led by Clare Montgomery, opened the day by branding the government of India's evidence presented in the case as "utterly unfounded".

Mallya, who talked to the media outside a London court where he is facing extradition proceedings, said: "I had a scheduled meeting in Geneva".

In a lookout circular issued on 16 October 2015, CBI said if Mallya tries to leave the country, he should be detained at the exit point.

The ruling on whether Indian tycoon Vijay Mallya can be extradited from Britain to India to face fraud charges will be given on December 10, a London judge said on Wednesday, after she heard closing submissions in the case.

Dismissing the claims made by him, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, in a Facebook post, said, "The statement is factually false in as much as it does not reflect the truth". 'So, the question of his having met me does not arise, ' he clarified.

Jaitley said Mallya "misused" the privilege of being a Rajya Sabha MP to catch him in corridors of Parliament.

"I did not even receive the papers he was holding in his hand", Jaitley said.

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"Rahul Gandhi should answer what were the relations between his family and Mallya", Mr. Goyal said, adding that the now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines was given loans bypassing all norms, laws and regulations.

On being asked how he plans to repay the banks with his assets being frozen, Mallya said that the decision in this regard will have to be taken by the Enforcement Directorate. While the tribunal was hearing the matter, Mallya left the country on March 2.

He did not do either of these and chose to recall the event only after Mallya's revelation appeared to have left him embarrassed. Although Jaitley was quick to release a statement saying the meeting with Mallya was unscheduled and he advised him to meet the banks, the sensational claim raises a larger question that if a senior cabinet minister knew that Mallya was going to fly away to London, could the government have done more to keep him in the country? "Both political parties don't like me", he said. SBI along with other lenders also approached the Karnataka High Court appealing for Mallya's arrest and impoundment of his passport.

"I am a scapegoat". On Wednesday, Mallya claimed that he had spoken to Jaitley and offered to reach a settlement with the banks, to which he owed an estimated sum of Rs 9,400 crore.

The extradition trial, which opened at the London court on 4 December a year ago, is aimed at laying out a prima facie case of fraud against Mallya.

He sarcastically described the video of Barrack 12 at Mumbai's Arthur Road Jail, which has been prepared for him, as "very impressive".

"Rahul Gandhi has gone on the back foot over Kingfisher Airlines".

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