New Delhi, July 14: The Centre on Friday told the Supreme Court it won't be able to secure the extradition of liquor baron Vijay Mallya, wanted for defaulting on bank loan repayments worth Rs 9,000 crore, before January 2018.
The Centre's response came after the Supreme Court said it cannot sentence him in a contempt of court case in his absence.
Attorney general KK Venguopal told the court that extradition hearings against Mallya in a UK court will begin on December 4, and "hopefully we should get him back by January 2018.
A bench comprising of Justices A K Goel and U U Lalit had fixed the matter for hearing on July 14 and sought the assistance of the Solicitor General in the case.
In the last hearing, the apex court had convicted him for contempt of court and summoned him to personally appear on July 10. Subsequently, the hearing was adjourned till July 14.
The apex court was hearing a plea by a consortium of banks, which moved the apex court after Mallya received loan of USD 40 million from a British firm, Diageo Plc, in February 2016, and allegedly transferred the money to his children, instead of repaying the loans that he owes to the banks.
India had recently asked Britain to ensure early extradition of Mallya, who is an accused in a bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines.