Millennium Post

HC snubs Mallya’s plea against wilful defaulter tag

The Delhi High Court on Thursday refused to hear Vijay Mallya’s plea against State Bank of India’s decision to name him a “wilful defaulter” and said he can approach an appropriate forum.

Sensing the mood of the court, Mallya’s counsel requested Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw to allow them to withdraw their petition including one filed by United Breweries Holdings (UBHL), which is also owned by the businessman.

The court allowed Mallya’s request, made through senior advocate Rajiv Nayar, while giving them the liberty to approach before an appropriate court for any remedial measures, if available under the law. Mallya has moved the Delhi High Court on the ground that it has jurisdiction to hear his plea, as he is a resident of Delhi and also a Rajya Sabha member and has received all the correspondence here.

His plea has alleged that the October 31, 2015 decision of SBI’s grievance redressal committee denying legal representation at a hearing held by the bank on October 29, 2015 while declaring him and UBHL as wilful defaulters is purportedly illegal.

The petition challenged the decision of SBI identifying them as a wilful defaulters and intimating the Reserve Bank of India and the Credit Information Companies for inclusion of names of the petitioners in the list of wilful defaulters.

Mallya has contended in his plea that it is “violation of natural justice”. The court, however, refused to go into that and said it “cannot confer the jurisdiction”.

It said it cannot have two different bench hearing the same matter. “The Bombay High Court has earlier heard it. This should also be before that court only. What’s the problem,” the court asked.
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