Nitin Gadkari clarifies on his ‘Mallya not a thief’ remark

A day after stoking controversy with his remark that just by defaulting loans once, Vijay Mallya doesn’t become a thief, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari clarified himself saying his comment was taken out of context. He added the government’s action against the fugitive businessman is right and justified, if the accused has done anything wrong.

“I had said if Vijay Mallya has done any wrong and a probe is underway on him, then the probe is right and suitable,” the transport minister said. He added, “I had also said his (Mallya) account was a prime account for 40 years. It went for a toss on the 41st year. Ups and downs are bound to happen in business for different reasons; sometimes it’s due to global economy, internal and external situations or business cycle. Both my statements have been taken out of context.”

Gadkari said that during his speech on Thursday he was trying to explain that ups and downs are part of business. “My statement is about support during downturns to protect jobs. Fraud is completely unacceptable,” he said.

“I have nothing to do with Vijay Mallya… Mallya’s was a prime account for 40 years when he repaid loans regularly. He entered the aviation sector, and ran into problems. So does that make him a thief? He defaulted once, and he turned to be a fraud? This mindset is not right,” Gadkari had said.

The remarks of Gadkari on fugitive Vijay Mallaig attracted heat from various corners, forcing him to come up with the clarification.