On January 5, the special FEO court declared him a first FEO under the new law. On June 22, 2018, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had filed an application at the PMLA court to declare Mr. Mallya a FEO and sought orders to confiscate all his properties estimated to be around ₹12,500 crore.
On June 30, 2018 the PMLA court took cognisance of the application filed by the agency. On March 13, 2019, the special court will hear the second part of the application by ED, on the confiscation of properties and the intervenors will also be heard.
Senior counsel Amit Desai appearing for Mr. Mallya said every defaulter of a bank loan is not a criminal and called the FEO Act draconian.
He said Mr. Mallya is willing to pay the entire loan but by declaring him a FEO his assets will be confiscated which will harm the creditors.
The court said, “The tag will go away as soon as your client comes back and faces legal proceedings here. Once he comes back, the property too will be released...So, when is that happening?”
Mr. Desai said Mr. Mallya wants to return and had made this clear earlier too but he is unable to, as a UK court had prohibited him from returning.
“The court has limited his movement. It is like a bail condition.”
At this, the court said, “You can volunteer to return. Have you ever gone to the English court and said you want to return (to India) and face pending proceedings?”