Vijay Mallya first businessman to be declared 'fugitive economic offender'?

A Mumbai court on Saturday declared embattled liquor baron Vijay Mallya a fugitive economic offender (FEO) on a plea of the Enforcement Directorate.

With this declaration he has become the first businessman to be tagged so under the F 2018.

The fugitive economic offenders‘ law came into force in August last year in light of the several business tycoons committing financial crimes worth thousands of crores of rupees and fleeing the country to avoid prosecution.

A person can be named an offender under this law if there is an arrest warrant against him or her for involvement in economic offences involving at least Rs. 100 crore or more and has fled from India to escape legal action.

Agencies have been trying to bring other financial offenders like Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi under the ambit  of fugitive economic offenders‘ law.

Meanwhile, twenty-seven defaulting businessmen and economic offenders have fled the country in the last five years, Parliament was informed on Friday. 

Interpol has been approached to issue red corner notices (RCNs) against 20 persons out of these 27, Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.

He further said Interpol has already issued RCN against eight persons who have fled the country and extradition requests have been sent in the case of six.

The government, he said, has also advised the public sector banks to obtain a certified copy of the passport of promoters/directors and other authorised signatories of companies availing loan facilities of more than Rs 50 crore. 

(With inputs from agencies)