India welcomes UK decision on Mallya extradition

New Delhi: India on Monday welcomed UK government’s order to extradite fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya and said it awaits “early completion” of the legal process in the matter.

UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid has ordered the extradition of Mallya on charges of conspiracy to defraud and money laundering offences, the British Home Office said in London.

“We have taken note of the decision of the UK Home Secretary to sign on the order for Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India,” a top government source said.

“While we welcome the UK government’s decision in the matter, we await the early completion of the legal process for his extradition,” the source said.

The 63-year-old businessman had been found to have a case to answer before the Indian courts by Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on December 10, 2018.

Javid, UK’s senior-most Pakistani-origin minister, had two months from that date to sign on that order.

The UK Home Office confirmed on Monday the minister signed Mallya’s extradition order on Sunday after considering all matters.

“Vijay Mallya is accused in India of conspiracy to defraud, making false representations and money laundering offences,” the Home Office spokesperson said.

Mallya is on bail on an extradition warrant executed by the Scotland Yard in April 2017 after Indian authorities brought fraud and money-laundering charges amounting to Rs 9,000 crore against the former Kingfisher Airlines boss.

He now has 14 days from February 4 to apply for leave to appeal to the UK High Court.

Mallya previously indicated that he intends to file an application to appeal against the Westminster Magistrates’ Court verdict in favour of his extradition to India.