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Kingfisher says court stayed United Bank’s wilful defaulter tag

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New Delhi: Grounded Indian carrier Kingfisher Airlines Ltd has said a court has halted the execution of a decision by state-run United Bank of India that declared the airline and its directors “wilful defaulters”.

The Calcutta High Court will hear the case on Nov. 10 and has sought more information from both sides, Kingfisher said in a statement late on Saturday.

United Bank officials could not be reached immediately for comment on Sunday.

The airline, founded by liquor baron Vijay Mallya, has not flown in two years for want of cash. It owes more than $1 billion to a consortium of lenders, mostly state-run.

United Bank of India had this month declared Mallya and the company “wilful defaulters”. IDBI Bank, another state-run lender, has said it is considering similar action.

That could damage the fund-raising prospects of Mallya’s businesses and could force him to give up his corporate positions.

Kingfisher had challenged the bank’s decision as “wrongful”.

The Supreme Court earlier this month refused to entertain a petition filed by Kingfisher Airline against being declared as wilful defaulter, saying it has become infructuous as the Grievance Redressal Committee of Union Bank of India has already passed an order.

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