Rahul Gandhi, who is touring across England and Germany, reportedly claimed that liquor baron and fugitive Vijay Mallya had met with officials from the BJP prior to his escape from India. During a meeting with the Indian Journalists’ Association in London, Rahul said that though jails in India are ‘difficult places,’ they are apparently ‘pretty decent’ for Mallya.
Indian Congress party president Rahul Gandhi addresses a public meeting at Saroornagar Stadium in Hyderabad on August 14, 2018.
Gandhi is on a two-day visit to the capital city of Southern Indian State of Telangana. / AFP PHOTO / NOAH SEELAM
Rahul went on to add that Mallya, who is wanted in India for his involvement in a bank fraud worth Rs 9,000 crore, should not receive any form of special treatment. “Indian prisons are pretty decent as far as Mallya is concerned. Justice should be the same for all Indian people,” he said.
Indian tycoon Vijay Mallya (C) walks with his son Siddharth Mallya (R) as he leaves after appearing at Westminster Magistrates Court in central London on July 31, 2018, to attend the closing arguements in his extradition hearing.
Mallya left India in March 2016 owing more than $1 billion after defaulting on loan payments to state-owned banks and allegedly misusing the funds. The hearing was adjourned until September. / AFP PHOTO / Tolga AKMEN
Mallya took refuge in the UK since he fled from India in 2016. The Indian government has since filed for an extradition request and had to prove that the living conditions in its prisons were humane for him. Rahul’s outburst comes after the government sent an eight-minute-long video of Barrack 12 of Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai to a British court, highlighting the facilities that he could expect if he is extradited to India.
The video allegedly proves that the accused’s cell has natural light, a TV set, a personal toilet, beds and access to a courtyard during the day.