Vijay Mallya Skips ED Hearing Again, Seeks Time Till May

09/04/2016 2:37 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:26 AM IST
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Force India team principal Vijay Mallya gives the thumb up sign after Force India driver Adrian Sutil of Germany was the fastest in final practice ahead of qualifying for Sunday's Italian Formula One Grand Prix, at the Monza racetrack, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2009. (AP Photo/Alberto Pellaschiar)

NEW DELHI -- Beleaguered businessman Vijay Mallya will not be presenting himself before Enforcement Directorate (ED) investigators for the third time today as he sought time till May to depose before it in connection with a money laundering probe in over Rs 900 crore IDBI loan fraud case.

Officials said Mallya has informed the Investigating Officer (IO) of the case in Mumbai that he will be unable to depose personally as scheduled today citing the ongoing legal proceedings in the Supreme Court over settlement of loans.

However, it is understood that the liquor baron has suggested his legal team can help ED in taking the probe forward.

Sources did not immediately comment as to what next step the agency will take now as he has sought time till May, a request he made to the IO last week too and which was turned down.

"The next action will be decided in due course," they said.

The agency had issued fresh summons last week to Mallya asking him to appear on 9 April after he sought two extensions from the earlier dates of 18 March and 2 April citing official reasons.

Officials had, however, earlier said that the agency has by and large two options in case an accused skips appearance on summons thrice, the maximum time allowed under PMLA.

The options include revoking his or her passport and/or getting issued a non-bailable warrant.

ED officials had earlier hinted that the 9 April summons could possibly be the last to Mallya.

The IO of the case had allowed his plea to postpone his appearance till now, they said, both on technical and legal grounds.

It is understood that Mallya, while seeking extensions, had informed the IO that cases related to bank loans were currently sub-judice in the Supreme Court and he was trying to settle these loans with the help of his legal and corporate team and, hence, would require some more time.

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