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Vijay Mallya says he feels sorry for Jet Airways, ready to pay even from Indian jail

Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya has once again questioned Indian banks on why they are refusing to accept the money he is ready to repay them. In a series of tweets on Wednesday, Vijay Mallya said he feels sorry for Naresh Goyal who recently had to step down as chairperson of Jet Airways, an airline he founded

Vijay Mallya said even though Naresh Goyal’s Jet Airways was a major competitor for Kingfisher (an airline owned by Mallya that stopped operations due to non-payments of banks loans), he feels sorry “to see such a large private airline on the brink of failure”.

In a tweet, Vijay Mallya asked why are private airlines being discriminated against in India even though the “government used Rs 35,000 crore of public funds to bail out Air India”.

“Just being a PSU is no excuse for discrimination,” he said.

Naresh Goyal was forced to step down as chairperson of Jet Airways after lenders expressed lack of faith in the airlines because of its mounting loans. Air India faced a similar crisis but was bailed out by the central government.

“Even though we were fierce competitors, my sympathies go out to Naresh and Neeta Goyal who built Jet Airways that India should be extremely proud of. Fine Airline providing vital connectivity and class servicesad that so many airlines have bitten the dust in India. Why ?”

Reiterating his stand that he is ready to repay banks in India, Vijay Mallya said, “True, Kingfisher borrowed from PSU Banks as well. I have offered to pay back 100 percent but am being criminally charged instead. Airline Karma?”

“I am willing to pay either way whether I am in London or in an Indian Jail. Why don’t Banks take the money I offered first?” he said.

Vijay Mallya owes nearly Rs 9,000 crore to various public sector banks in India. The Indian government is trying to extradite him from the United Kingdom. Mallya has been opposing India’s request. The matter is being heard in a court in London.

ALSO READ | Will it be a hard landing for Jet Airways today? All eyes on lenders

ALSO READ | Naresh Goyal won’t return to Jet Airways, opts out of bidding for airline he founded

ALSO WATCH | Jet Airways employees hold protest in Mumbai


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