Court issues warrant against Kingfisher's Vijay Mallya

Last Updated: Fri, Oct 12, 2012 16:40 hrs

NEW DELHI/HYDERABAD (Reuters) - A court in Hyderabad issued a warrant against billionaire Vijay Mallya and his Kingfisher Airlines on Friday, an airport operator that is suing the company said.

GMR Infrastructure, which operates airports in Delhi and Hyderabad, has filed a case against Mallya and other executives of Kingfisher alleging that four cheques worth a combined 105 million rupees bounced.

"Since they failed to appear before the magistrate, the court has ordered issuance of non-bailable warrant against Kingfisher, Mr. Vijay Mallya and four other Kingfisher officials," GMR said on Friday.

Kingfisher said that the company had not been served with a warrant. The statement did not comment on Mallya or the other executives. Officials at the court were unavailable to comment.

A person served with a non-bailable warrant has to appear in court before a specified date to avoid detention, a lawyer who is not part of the case said.

Once India's second-biggest airline, Kingfisher has never turned a profit since its launch in 2005. It has defaulted on payments to airports, tax authorities and banks and is seven months behind on salary payments to staff.

Kingfisher said on Friday that its planes, grounded since October 1 after an employee protest turned violent, would not fly for another week.

(Reporting by Anurag Kotoky and Mohammed Shafeeq; Editing by Erica Billingham)

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