Air India began to dismantle the private jet, Airbus A319, of Fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya at its hangar in Mumbai.
Earlier, the jet was auctioned to Florida-based Aviation Management Sales (AMS), which won the bid for the aircraft for Rs 34 crore in June last year. But due to red tape, American company, AMS could not be able to take possession of the aircraft. Parts of the dismantled aircraft will be sent to Aviation Management Sales. The dismantling work is being done for the few weeks as part of an attempt to make it fly-worthy again. After the Kingfisher Airlines was grounded, the Service Tax Department had seized the aircraft.
The service tax authorities had put the luxury A319 jet, which Mallya used to criss-cross the world to solicit business deals, under the hammer to recover their dues to the tune of Rs 800 crore accumulated on account of non-payment of service tax before his erstwhile Kingfisher Airlines went belly up in October 2012.
The plane was attached by the service tax department in December 2013, claiming tax dues of over Rs 800 crore from Kingfisher Airlines. The auction, in the past, had failed as the bids were much below the reserve price, which was cut to $12.5 million from $22.5 million initially.