New Delhi: A Delhi High Court judge recused himself on Friday from hearing Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal's plea challenging a look out circular (LOC) issued against him barring him from travelling outside the country.
When the matter came up for hearing before Justice Vibhu Bakhru, he said that "this matter will have to go before another bench" and directed that it be listed before another judge on July 9. The judge, however, did not give any reasons for recusing from the matter.
According to Goyal's plea, the LOC was issued against him on the request of the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) which comes under the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA). He has sought quashing of the LOC as well as several office memorandums which lay down the guidelines for issuing the travel ban.
Goyal said he came to know of the LOC on May 25 when he and his wife, Anita, were offloaded from a flight to Dubai with an onward connection to London. He has contended that no ECIR/FIR has been registered against him and he has not been named as an accused in any case warranting issuance of the LOC.
According to the MCA, the LOC was issued after an inspection by the ministry found large-scale irregularities at Jet Airways, which shuttered operations in April due to acute cash crunch.
Naresh and Anita Goyal had resigned from the board of Jet Airways, which the former founded 26 years ago, in March following a debt restructuring plan. He had also resigned as the airline's chairman. Jet Airways is undergoing insolvency proceedings.
Meanwhile, the ministry has also ordered a probe by SFIO into the affairs of Jet Airways.