Rahul Gandhi. Photograph:( PTI )
Congress President Rahul Gandhi claimed Saturday that fugitive tycoon Vijay Mallya had met BJP leaders before fleeing India.
Gandhi added that Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government has been lenient on prominent industrialists. Gandhi made his comments in London, while speaking with the Indian Journalists' Association.
"Before Mallya left India, he met senior BJP leaders, that is documented. I won't name them," PTI quoted Gandhi as saying.
The BJP has not replied to the charges as yet.
Mallya, under fire for alleged financial fraud and money laundering, left India on March 2, 2016. He owes Rs 9,000 crore to several Indian banks.
Indian authorities have been trying to bring him back but Mallya has challenged an extradition request filed by the CBI saying Indian jails do not have "natural light and fresh air".
The CBI has since shot a video of Barrack Number 12 of Mumbai's Arthur Road Jail where Mallya will be incarcerated should he be extradited. The six to eight-minute-long video shows the jail as having a personal toilet, TV, and library, along with a courtyard.
Gandhi on Saturday slammed the idea of Mallya having a different jail, saying that "justice should be same for all Indian people and Mallya can't have a different jail".
He also questioned the basis of imparting huge sums as loans to these absconding businessmen (Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi being the others).
"The real question is when we talk about job creation. Indian banks gave 35,000 crores to Nirav Modi. Narendra Modi let him run away from India. How many jobs did Nirav create and on what basis he was given such big sums? That's the same exact thing for Vijay Mallya. I think Indian prison were pretty suited places for Mallya," ANI quoted Gandhi as saying.