Supreme Court judge Justice R F Nariman January 20 recused himself from hearing a plea of fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya against a Karnataka High Court directing him to pay Rs 3,101 crore to a consortium of banks. A bench of Justices Nariman and S Ravindra Bhat observed that Mallya has not deposited a single penny to the banks so far.
Justice Nariman however refused to hear the matter and directed that it be listed before another bench of the apex court.
Senior advocate S Guru Krishna Kumar, appearing for Mallya, said at the outset that other petitions filed by him were coming up for consideration before another bench.
“Let the matter be listed before a Bench of which one of us (Justice RF Nariman) is not a Member,” the bench said in its order
Mallya challenged Karnataka High Court orders, of October 5, 2018 and September 13, 2019, before the apex court. The orders had upheld the decision of the Debts Recovery Appellate Tribunal (DRAT), Bangalore to deposit Rs 3,101 crore as a precondition to hearing his appeal against a Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) order.
The DRT Bangalore had on January 19, 2017 directed Mallya to pay Rs 6,203 crore with interest to a consortium of banks led by State Bank of India, who had lent money for now defunct Kingfisher Airlines.
Mallya challenged the order before the DRAT in 2018, which dismissed the appeal for want of appearance and non-compliance of objections.
He again moved DRAT and filed an application seeking restoration of his appeal.
The DRAT, on March 28, 2018, directed Mallya to deposit Rs 3,101 crore on or before April 25, 2018 and observed that in case of failure in compliance, the appeal will be liable to be dismissed automatically.
Mallya then challenged the March 28, 2018 order before the High Court, which dismissed his appeal on October 5, 2018 and subsequently he knocked the door of apex court.