LONDON: The personal sword of Tipu Sultan, the Tiger of Mysore, has vanished and no one knows where it’s gone. No one except Vijay Mallya, perhaps.
The liquor tycoon gave away the rare sword in 2016 because his family told him it was bringing him “bad luck”, the London high court heard on Tuesday from the lawyer representing 13 Indian banks who Mallya owes about Rs 9,000 crore. The sword is worth £188,000 (about Rs 1.8 crore today).
The banks are attempting to convince the court that the freeze order on Mallya’s global assets should not be discharged. The lawyer cited the sword as one example of how the banks are at risk of Mallya “dissipating his assets”.
In Bengaluru, one of Mallya’s former colleagues claimed the liquor tycoon did try to give it to a reputed museum for safekeeping after it was purchased by him at auction in London. “However, the museum refused to take it as it was not clear as to how it could be preserved,” the ex-colleague said, adding that it was unclear what Mallya did with the sword after that.