Politics

Vijay Mallya Resigns as Rajya Sabha MP

The independent MP and liquor baron quit one day before the Ethics Committee of the Upper House was set to recommend his expulsion.

Vijay Mallya Credit: Reuters/Action Images / Hoch Zwei.

Vijay Mallya Credit: Reuters/Action Images / Hoch Zwei.

Independent MP and liquor baron Vijay Mallya, facing a case of loan default of over Rs. 9,400 crore, today resigned from the Rajya Sabha, a day before Ethics Committee of the Upper House was set to recommend his expulsion.

In his resignation letter to Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari, he said he does not want his “name and reputation to be further dragged in the mud”.

Mallya thanked the Rajya Sabha Chairman and his “colleagues in the House for all the cooperation” that he received during his two terms. This is Mallya’s second term in the Rajya Sabha, which would have come to an end on July 1 had he not resigned.

The Ethics Panel of the Rajya Sabha, which had taken up the matter, had unanimously decided in its April 25 meeting that Mallya should no longer remain a member of the House and was planning to recommend his expulsion in its next meeting on May 3.

At the panel meeting, JD-U President Sharad Yadav had strongly pitched for immediate recommendation for Mallya’s expulsion. However, some other members felt procedures had to be followed and he should be given time to explain his conduct. The panel decided that he would be given one week to do so.

Mallya said he received a letter from panel Chairman Karan Singh dated April 25 which said that the Rajya Sabha Chairman had referred an issue to the Committee on Ethics regarding “purported default” by Mallya in the “repayment of bank loans”, which have “not been reflected” in his declaration of assets and liabilities.

Appending a copy of his reply to Karan Singh, Mallya, who faxed his resignation to the Rajya Sabha Chairman, asserted, “The allegations against me are blatantly false and baseless.”

“I am shocked that the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance, Government of India has provided factually wrong information to a Parliament Committee,” he added.

“Nevertheless since I do not want my name and reputation to be further dragged in the mud and since recent events suggest that I will not get a fair trial or justice, I am hereby resigning as a member of the Rajya Sabha with immediate effect,” Mallya said.

In a step closer to initiating his deportation, the government had over a week ago revoked Mallya’s passport. Mallya is believed to be in the UK after leaving India on March 2.