CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury slammed the NDA dispensation on Wednesday over embattled businessman Vijay Mallya’s claim that he met the finance minister before leaving India, and said it reconfirmed how the Modi government “enables big defaulters to loot public money and scoot”.
“The fundamental point is how he got away despite ‘lookout notices’?” Yechury tweeted while mocking Prime Minister Narendra Modi by tagging a picture of him performing yoga by resting on a stone and facing the sky. Mallya, facing charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to around Rs 9,000 crore and fighting an extradition case, told reporters in London that he met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and offered to settle with the banks.
“I left India because I had a scheduled meeting in Geneva. Before leaving I met the finance minister and offered to settle (the issue with the banks),” Mallya said, without naming the minister. Jaitley rubbished Mallya’s statement, saying he never gave him an appointment since 2014 but the liquor baron misused his position as Rajya Sabha MP to accost him in Parliament.
Yechury said the government did not act against big loan defaulters despite former Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan apprising it about them. “The former RBI governor says he gave a list of fraud cases to the top – the PMO. It is clear why nothing was done – other than packing off the former Governor. Shame,” he said.
“As with the Rafale scam and Choksi scam, this latest revelation by Mallya puts Modi govt in the dock. It is not the finance minister alone, we cannot be sure what other facts are being hidden even now,” Yechury said.
Diamond trader Mehul Choksi, along with his nephew and business partner Nirav Modi, is accused of defrauding the state-run Punjab National Bank of about Rs 13,000 crore. Both Choksi and Nirav Modi have fled the country earlier this year.