As fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya on Wednesday said he had met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley before leaving the country, the Congress took a dig at him dubbing him as "fiscal mismanagement blog minister".
In a statement issued on Facebook, the Finance Minister said that Mallya's statement is "factually false". However, since he was a Member of Rajya Sabha and he occasionally attended the House, he misused that privilege on one occasion while I was walking out of the House to go to my room.
When asked if he has convinced the court that he has the means to pay what he said he will, Mallya said, "Obviously, that is why a settlement offer has been made".
Terming Mallya's offer to settle overdue loans of more than Rs 9,000 crore to his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines as "bluff offers", Jaitley said he did not even take the papers the liquor baron was carrying during that brief encounter.
"My attention has been drawn to a statement made to the media by Vijay Mallya on having met me with an offer of settlement".
This statement created political storm in India.
Only on Tuesday, the Congress released the Modi government's reply in Parliament that said the Prime Minister's Office was aware of complaints against Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi in 2016, long before the uncle and nephew fled the country.
The remarks by Mallya came as he arrived at the Westminster Magistrates' Court for a hearing in his extradition case, during which the judge is expected to review a video of the Mumbai jail cell prepared by the Indian authorities for the embattled liquor tycoon.
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Soon after Mr Jaitley's rebuttal, Vijay Mallya appeared to tone down the seriousness of his claim, saying it was not a "formal meeting" and he only "happened to meet" the minister.
Within minutes of the revelation by Mallya, Congress communications chief Randeep Surjewala: "Vijay Mallya met Arun Jaitley, sought his permission and ran away with India's money. Everybody gets paid off and I guess that's the primary objective", he said. There is nothing that I can do about it.
According to Mallya, he and the United Breweries Group (UBHL) have filed an application in the Karnataka High Court on June 22, 2018, setting out available assets of approximately Rs 13,900 crores.
"I am a scapegoat. Both political parties don't like me", he said, while having a cigarette during the lunch break in the hearing for his ongoing extradition case.
During the hearing, Mallya's defence team branded the evidence presented by the Indian government in the case as "utterly unfounded".
The extradition trial, which opened at the London court on December 4 a year ago, is aimed at laying out a prima facie case of fraud against Mallya.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), arguing on behalf of the Indian government, had agreed to the request and the video has since been submitted to the court.