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Mallya’s extradition to India: Govt. can’t set timeline, says envoy

Mallya's extradition to India: Govt. can’t set timeline, says envoy

The UK govt. cannot commit a timeline for extraditing  Vijay Mallya to India, British High Commissioner, Philip Barton said yesterday. Though, it is to stop criminals from escaping justice by moving from one country to another. Barton commented after a month when India asked the British Government to reject Mallya’s plea seeking asylum in the UK.

The official said that

government and courts are absolutely clear about their roles in preventing people avoid justice by moving to another country. And the UK government will ensure that the criminal can’t escape justice by crossing national borders.

During an online media briefing on whether Mallya has sought asylum in the UK, Sir Barton said his government never comments on such issues. Philip Barton, however, declined to commit a timeline for the UK Government to take a call on extradition of Mallya. He said that extradition of Mallya is an ongoing legal case and the government doesn’t have anything new on it.

“Under United Kingdom law, extradition cannot take place until it is resolved. The issue is confidential and we cannot go into any detail. We cannot estimate how long this issue will take to resolve. We are seeking to deal with this as quickly as possible,” the official had said.

At the same time, he said that the UK government is aware of the importance India attaches to the case.  In June, India had asked the UK not to consider the request of Vijay Mallya seeking asylum in the country. India argued that there were no grounds for Mallya to be persecuted back home as alleged in his plea. Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Anurag Srivastava had said at an online media briefing.

 The UK government,

earlier, indicated that the businessman is unlikely to be extradited to India anytime soon. And stated that there is a legal issue that needed to be resolved before his extradition can be arranged.

In May, the businessman lost his appeals in the UK Supreme Court against his extradition to India. Where he stands to face money laundering and fraud charges. The UK top court’s decision marked a major setback to the 64-year-old business tycoon. As, it came weeks after he lost his High Court appeal in April against an extradition order to India.

Mallya has been in the UK since March 2016 and is currently out on bail on an extradition warrant issued by Scotland Yard on April 18, 2017. The High Court verdict in April upheld the 2018 ruling by Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot. Who,  after a year-long extradition trial in held that the businessman had a “case to answer” in the Indian courts.

To seek asylum in the UK, Mallya purportedly invoked the Article 3 of the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR). Which prohibits torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

The British Government has not yet decided on his plea for asylum. New Delhi requested the UK Government to reject his plea and to extradite him expeditiously to India.

:- by Snehi Suryash