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The Bench of Justices UU Lalit and Ashok Bhushan directed the Ministry of Home Affairs to ensure and facilitate Mallya's presence before the Court on October 5.
While dismissing the review petition filed by liquor baron Vijay Mallya against the order holding him guilty of contempt, the Supreme Court has directed the fugitive industrialist to be present before it on October 5 at 2 PM.
The Bench of Justices UU Lalit and Ashok Bhushan has also directed the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to ensure and facilitate Mallya's presence before the Court.
Today's order states,
"...the contempt petitions were directed to be listed on 10.07.2017 for hearing respondent No.3 with regard to the proposed punishment. Now that the Review Petitions are dismissed, we direct respondent No.3 to appear before this Court on 05.10.2020 at 02:00 p.m. and also direct the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi to facilitate and ensure the presence of respondent No.3 before this Court on that day."
The Court had held Mallya guilty of contempt of court in 2017 for wilfully disobeying its orders in a petition filed by the Consortium of Creditors (COC) led by the State Bank of India (SBI). Mallya was alleged to have transferred funds into the accounts of other persons in violation of the Court's orders, in addition to making "vague and unclear" disclosures about his assets.
Moreover, Mallya was directed to be present before the Court for the hearing on his sentencing, but had failed to abide to do so, considering he had already left India by the time.
The Court's 2017 judgment was under review before the Division Bench. In his review petition, Mallya had asserted that the Court had erred in proceeding against him on the basis of an incorrect recording that a reply was not filed by Mallya in response to the banks.
It was on this ground that the Court had placed the review petition for hearing before an open Court.
In its short judgment today, the Court noted that there was an error on the part of the Court to have observed and proceeded on the premise that a reply was not filed by Mallya in response to the statements filed by the banks.
Prior to the judgment being reserved, the matter had to be adjourned after it was revealed that a crucial reply filed by Mallya could not be located in the case records with the Court. This, after the Court sought an explanation from its own Registry on June 19 as to why the review petition filed by Mallya was not listed for the last three years.