LONDON: As a controversy rages on over Vijay Mallya leaving the country despite huge unpaid loans by his group, the beleaguered businessman today said he was being “hunted down by media in UK” but they did not look in the “obvious place”.
A miffed Mallya, who is reportedly in the UK and has been only tweeting for the past couple of days, did not disclose his exact location.
“I am being hunted down by media in UK. Sadly they did not look in the obvious place. I will not speak to media so don’t waste your efforts,” he said in a tweet.
Mallya, who is said to have left India for London on March 2, is facing legal proceedings for recovery of over Rs 9,000 crore, including interest, from his group companies.
Besides a few personal tweets, Mallya has also been re-tweeting various news reports including those about the problems in the aviation sector and about his sport and beverage ventures.
He also retweeted a tweet by his son Siddharth Mallya, who had said, “People don’t understand that I have nothing to do with it!” in reply to a message whether he was fed up with the Twitter backlash. Earlier on March 11, the UB Group chief had released a series of tweets saying he was not an “absconder” and keeps making frequent visits to and from India as an international busi-nessman. The 60-year-old liquor baron left the country days before banks approached the courts to seek orders restraining him from going abroad.
Opposition leaders including Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi have raised questions about how he was allowed to leave the country.
The government told the Supreme Court that Mallya had left India on March 2 following which the bench issued notice to him and sought his response within two weeks on pleas filed by a consortium of banks seeking direction for freezing his passport and his presence before the apex court.
Hundreds of unpaid employees of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, which was promoted by Mallya, have meanwhile written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking his intervention in the recovery of their dues which was estimated to be around Rs 300 crore. However, in a move which will provide some relief to the former Kingfisher employees, the tax department has asked its officials not to demand taxes if the TDS has been deducted and not deposited in the government’s account by the deductor.