As Mallya await DBT orders today, liquor baron says in one-time settlement talks with banks

Even as the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) is set to pass orders later today on SBI seeking the lenders' first right on the $75-million payout from Diageo to Vijay Mallya, the liquor baron said he is in talks to enter into a one-time settlement with state-run banks.

Last month, Mallya stepped down as chairman from United Spirits Ltd, ending months of acrimony with the company's new owner, Britain's Diageo Plc.

Vijay Mallya - AFP

Vijay Mallya - AFP

The businessman, who also owns the country's largest brewer United Breweries, has been under pressure from banks to repay debts since Kingfisher Airlines stopped flying in 2012.

Mallya said in a statement late on Sunday that he had three meetings with lenders to discuss settlement of debt by making additional payments to the banks.

"I have had three meetings and follow-up calls in the recent past, and my efforts will continue," Mallya said.

Banks have recovered an aggregate Rs 2,494 crore ($371.98 million), Mallya said.

The United Spirits board began a process last April to remove Mallya as the company's chairman due to alleged financial irregularities. Mallya denied the allegations and refused to resign.

DRT had reserved its order after hearing the submissions made by both parties - bankers and Mallya - on March 4.

SBI had filed three other applications, including one seeking Mallya's arrest and impounding of his passport, as the bank approached DRT seeking action against him for defaulting on loans.

SBI, which leads the consortium of 17 banks that lent money to the grounded Kingfisher Airlines, had moved DRT here against the airline's chairman Mallya in its bid to recover over Rs 7,000 crore of dues from him.

With inputs from Agencies

Updated Date: Mar 07, 2016 10:13 AM

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