New Delhi: Former United Breweries chairman Vijay Mallya, who owes nearly $1 billion to Indian banks, had left the country on March 2 via Jet Airways flight 9W122. His seat number was 1D, had checked-in seven bags and was sitting next to former Kingfisher Airline employee Pinky Lalwani, sources told NewsX on Friday.
Lalwani has been a long-standing companion of Mallya and was often spotted with his mother or attending to guests at his lavish parties. According to some sources, Pinky Lalwani and Mallya had tied the knot sometime ago but the information could not be verified.
Mallya had left India after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is probing the Vijay Mallya-Kingfisher Airlines case, did not intervene in his passage out of the country because there was no arrest warrant issued against him.
The banks whom Mallya has defaulted want him back in the country as soon as possible and the beleaguered liquor baron has said that his properties won’t suffice for the loans. Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, however, had earlier told the Supreme Court that Mallya has assets abroad, both movable and immovable, which are far excessive to loans secured by him here.
Meanwhile, rubbishing media reports that he had fled from the country and was staying in London, Mallya said that he has full faith in Indian judicial system and as a Parliament member he "respects and will comply with the law of the land."