Billionaire business tycoon, Mr. Vijay Mallya, who ran an airline and a liquor business, defaulted on loans taken from nationalised banks in India. Amount of his due was believed to be upwards to 3000 crore rupees. Tycoon did not pay salaries to his airline employees, let alone the money that was due to banks. Finally, Mr. Mallya left with all his bags and baggages, twenty two large suitcases, in a private plane and settled in his mansion in London. Government of India is trying to bring him back to India to face trial. First hurdle being getting an UK court to let British government to pack Mr. Mallya off to India. Without going into intricacies of legalese, what has come to attention of a lay person like me is Mr. Mallya is contending that Indian prisons are not suitable to hold him. Mr. Mallya fears his life may be in danger in Indian prison.
My pure blue nationalist blood boils at such aspersions being cast against our jails. That too on a foreign soil. Though, Indian side has assured UK judge that Mr. Mallya will have good time in Indian jail, I think, it is time, Indian government must parade in front of UK court, the likes of
- Shri Lalu Yadav, Ex chief minister of Bihar, convicted in fodder scam;
- Ms Sasikala Natarajan, right hand person on Tamil Nadu chief minister convicted on disproportional wealth case;
- Mr. Subroto Roy, a billionaire chairman of Sahara India, very much like Mr. Vijay Mallya, arrested in chitfund scam;
- Mr. Suresh Kalmadi, sports minister accused of CWG scam;
- Mr. A Raja, ex telecommunication minister in UPA II government, accused of 2G spectrum distribution scam;
- Ms. Kanimoji, powerful daughter of DMK supremo, also accused in 2G spectrum scam.
These are only a few prominent names. Many others run a complete business empire from within jail with access to full privileges.
We must assert that if one has adequate money and access to power, both of which Mr. Mallya is not is short supply, one can have access to private toilet, personal office equipped with fax machine. Ask Mr. Subroto Roy, who owes a measly sum of 3000 crore to his clients. With adequate power, one may enjoy privilege of having snacks and chai with jail superintendent. Ask Kalmadi and A Raja. One may have a bungalow fitted with all amenities to rule a state, if you happen to be ex CM of a state. Ask Lalu ji. One may even go out for shopping, have a masseuse and home cooked food. Ask Ms. Sasikala Nagarajan.
Indian side must parade these worthies in London court to reassure the judge that Mr Mallya has nothing to fear. He may have his scotch whiskey, his mutton biriyani and a bevy of girls in attendance in jail. He will not have to face pesky reporters and answer their questions. In fact, Mallya will have a better life in jail, all expense taken care of by Indian tax payers. Is this not what is happening in London too?