NEW DELHI, March 8 - In a move that may compound woes of liquor baron Vijay Mallya, the Supreme Court today agreed to hear tomorrow a plea of 13 banks, which had advanced loans of over Rs 9,000 crore to his firm, seeking a direction to restrain him from leaving India.
�List it for hearing tomorrow,� a Bench comprising Chief Justice TS Thakur and Justice UU Lalit said, when Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the banks, including State Bank of India, mentioned the matter for urgent hearing.
The consortium of banks, in their appeal, have assailed the March 4 order of the Karnataka High Court refusing an �ex-parte ad interim� order against Mallya, England-based Diageo Plc and United Spirits Limited.
The banks said that the High Court should have passed an interim order, securing their financial interests, without hearing the industrialist and others, including debtor firm Kingfisher Airlines Limited.
�It is respectfully submitted that the same is wrong, erroneous and defeats the very purpose of filing the said writ petition. The High Court of Karnataka, at Bengaluru by its impugned order has completely failed to protect the interest of petitioner banks who are yet to recover an amount in excess of Rs 9,000 crore from respondent Nos. 1 to 4, � the appeal said.
Prior to moving the High Court, the banks had filed four pleas in the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) at Bengaluru seeking reliefs like freezing of Mallya�s passport, arrest warrant against him and issuance of a �garnishee order against Respondent Nos. 10 (Diageo Plc) and 11 (United Spirits Limited) from disbursing USD 75 million�. � PTI