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London court refuses to hand over Rs 8 crore to Vijay Mallya to pay his Indian legal fees | India News


LONDON: A London The court has refused to hand over £ 758,000 (Rs. 7.8 million) from the court’s fund office to liquor baron Vijay Mallya so that he can pay his legal fees in India.
Judge Miles of the London High Court Chancery’s Appeals Division on Wednesday dismissed the 65-year-old’s appeal against a February 8 lower court decision not to release cash to pay for his litigation in India from the 29 million rupees deposited in court following the € 3.2 million sales of his Le Grand Jardin property in Cannes, France.
The judge said there were no breakdowns or invoices to support the amounts requested. “Banks have repeatedly requested this information and Mallya has had numerous opportunities to provide it. Mallya has not provided any details of the steps that could be taken in the Indian proceedings in the foreseeable future that could be related to the bankruptcy petition, ”the judge said.
Mallya’s lawyer, Philip Marshal, had argued that Indian lawyers would not continue working unless they were paid. He said that the cases in India were closely related to the bankruptcy petition and that if Mallya was successful in India, it could have defenses against bankruptcy proceedings in the UK. A consortium of state-owned Indian banks to which Mallya owes 1 billion pounds sterling (10.8 billion rupees), as of June 2020, is trying to bankrupt Mallya in Britain.
The court heard that Mallya was seeking £ 554,000 (Rs 5.7 crore) to pay historic legal costs to Mumbai law firm Bachubhai Munim & Co and lead attorney Amit Desai, another £ 1,000 (Rs 1 lakh) to pay another law firm of Indian lawyers and £ 203,000 (2 million rupees) for their estimated future legal fees in various court cases in India.
The judge said that paying Indian lawyers would mean “preferring Indian lawyers as creditors in case Mallya files for bankruptcy”, while any proposed expenses should be “for the benefit of the creditors as a whole.”
Marshall had provided a letter from Bachubhai Munim & Co dated February 26, 2021, proposing a method in which their costs could be controlled and disputed by banks involving an Indian judge acting as a cost expert.
Judge Miles said the letter “was unsatisfactory as it would involve placing Indian legal costs in the hands of an Indian expert over whom the UK court would have no control” and that it was an “inappropriate attempt to include material to support an application”. that it lacked evidence base when it was done ”.
The bankruptcy case had initially been postponed for six months to allow time for the cases in India to proceed and for Mallya to pay off her debt. Now a hearing will take place on July 26 when a judge will decide whether to issue an immediate bankruptcy order against the embattled businessman.
“The pandemic in India has had a serious impact on the progress of cases through the Indian courts and there is no material to allow the court to conclude that any steps that might be taken in the Indian hearings between now and July 2021 would have any material in connection with the bankruptcy petition. Most of the amounts requested are historical sums, “said Miles, noting that the Indian lawyers” were prepared to do a job that they did without validation. ”
Mallya was ordered to pay 95% of the bank’s costs in this case. Marshall indicated that he would take the matter to the appeals court. However, Miles allowed Mallya’s appeal against a cost order at the February 8 hearing. Mallya had been ordered to pay 50% of the banks’ costs and Miles ruled that they should instead be the costs in the case.

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