NEW DELHI: Squarely putting the blame for collapse of kingfisher Airlines (KFA) on the then government’s policies and economic conditions, troubled liquor tycoon. Vijay Mallya has said public funds used to bail out state-owned Air India. However not the then “largest domestic airline”.
Begged for help, not loans, says Vijay Mallya
Defending himself in a string of tweets, Mallya said all he wanted was help associated with policy change and not loans, questioning “public funds given to Air India“.
“KFA collapsed with oil at USD 140 per barrel and state sales tax on high rupee devaluation. No FDI engine failures. Economic depression. need more?” he asked in a tweet.
He additional said: “And KFA being the largest domestic airline was the worst hit. Government bailed out Air India, but did not bail out KFA. such a lot for “favours”.
Vijay Mallya said he wanted policy changes that he did not get, that hurt his airlines.
He tweeted that he “begged for help” and not for loans, but policy changes — declared goods status for fuel, flat rate of state sales tax rather than ad valorem, FDI.
Claiming that KFA was “India’s largest and finest airline”. He said, “It sadly failed purely due to economic and policy situations. I’m humble enough to say sorry to employees and every one stakeholders everyday. I actually wish government helped.”
Claiming that his core alcohol businesses were “severely controlled” by the govt. Vijay Mallya said “he also not allowed to even downsize KFA due (to) employment and connectivity”.
Reacting to accusations of public funds lost in loans to KFA, Vijay Mallya retorted, “What regarding public funds given to Air India? I offered a settlement.”
He additional said, “What diversion of funds? I invested over (Rs) 4,500 crore into KFA.”
Defending his lavish lifestyle even when sinking Rs 4,500 crore into KFA. Mallya said “if my lifestyle was lavish, it was for 2 decades before KFA was even born”.
On the implications of the ongoing cases against him on entrepreneurship in India, the beleaguered businessman said “. The existence of such criminal arms of the govt and misuse for vendetta is sure to scare anyone”