Immigration officials at Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) stopped NMC Health founder BR Shetty from flying to Abu Dhabi on board an Etihad flight scheduled to depart at 2.45 am on Saturday.
A source privy to the incident and its background confirmed that the businessman was “not allowed” to board the flight after a Central agency alerted the immigration officials about his departure, and that “he was not detained, but only asked not to board the flight”.
The source said it is likely that Shetty figured in alerts issued to the immigration officials here for them to stop the entrepreneur from boarding the flight. Shetty’s current whereabouts, however, have not been disclosed, and immigration officials were not available to separately confirm this. Shetty reportedly owes USD 250 million to Bank of Baroda and varying amounts to other banks.
Shetty accused of $6.6bn fraud in UAE
A consortium of Indian banks had requested travel restrictions on him to pursue the process of repayment. Besides, an Indian court had prohibited Shetty and his wife Dr Chandrakumari from selling properties guaranteed against the loans. The source said Shetty and Chandrakumari were to leave together for Abu Dhabi, but only she was allowed to board the flight.
Shetty had spent eight months in India since February, mainly to visit his ailing brother who passed away in March-end, and had assured people in Dubai that he would return to the United Arab Emirates, where he faces charges too.
Those charges pertain to an alleged fraud committed by his former senior executives amounting to $6.6 billion. Shetty had assured UAE authorities of his return, especially after doubts were being raised that he had fled that country to evade the charges.
He had also reportedly filed a complaint with the Federal Attorney-General of the UAE in April-end requesting a thorough probe into those alleged frauds by his former executives, said to have been committed in collaboration with bank officials.
Source: Indian Express