An Indian judge has ruled against the wish of Jet Airways founder, Naresh Goyal, from leaving the country.
Goyal’s Jet Airways has been under a fraud investigation after the airline was ordered by a court ruling to file for bankruptcy.
Apart from other challenges in the Indian aviation sector, Jet Airways faced stiff competition driven by a cutthroat pricing regime that made it lose billion of dollars.
The airlines’ bankruptcy was necessitated by its inability to service a total of $1.1 billion debt to various banks, suppliers and sundry creditors.
However, there is a serious fraud investigation against Goyal. Indian prosecutors accused him of fraudulent dealings of up to $2.6 billion.
While he has denied all allegations, authorities in India said they have started an investigation into the matter and they will not allow Goyal to leave the country.
The Delhi High Court’s single-judge bench of Justice SK Kait expressed apprehension Goyal may not return like others facing allegations of fraud.
“I won’t name, but some people are sitting outside the country, and India is not able to bring them back,” he said
Despite a possible infringement on his fundamental human rights of movement, for all it is worth, Indian authorities have a cogent reason.
This is because several Indian business tycoons who were under fraud investigations have fled the country.
A major case in point is the founder of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, Vijay Mallya fled the country to the UK and he refused to come back to the country. It is now seven years after he fled the country. Indian authorities have not been able to extradite him to face fraud charges.
Nirav Modi, a diamond investor and businessman also fled the country, refusing to return with a pending extradition proceeding.