New Delhi: When diamantaire Nirav Modi was found to be living in a swanky 8-million pound apartment in London’s West End, the Indian government claimed that they have been making persistent efforts to prosecute and extradite the Indian businessman, hinting a fault on the other side. However, a leading news portal on Tuesday reported that the British authorities had offered to come to India to initiate action against Nirav Modi, but, they got no response from India.
Notably, India sent the first alert to the Serious Fraud Office in February 2018, soon after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered a case against Nirav Modi and his family members in the multi-crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam.
NDTV reported that it was the British authorities that first got to know Nirav Modi was in the UK and informed India on the same while its officials were still struggling to know if Nirav Modi was in Hong Kong or Europe. Following which, the Serious Frauds Office assigned a counsel to help India but it soon realized that more documents were needed from the Indian side. They wrote three letters last year, only to get no response from India.
On March 11, the Enforcement Directorate had filed a fresh chargesheet against Nirav Modi, and others under the anti-money laundering law, officials said Monday.
They said the chargesheet or the prosecution complaint has been filed before a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court in Mumbai a few days ago and it is understood that the agency has underlined the role of Modi’s wife Ami and funds routed by her in the latest document.
The development is being seen in the backdrop of a recent British daily report that said Modi is living in a swanky 8-million pound apartment in London’s West End and is now involved in new diamond business. Modi, 48, is currently living in a three-bedroom flat occupying half of a floor of the landmark Centre Point tower block in London, where rent is estimated to cost 17,000 pounds a month, The Telegraph has reported.
On Saturday, ED said the United Kingdom’s home secretary recently referred India’s request for extraditing the tainted businessman to a court for initiating legal proceedings against him.
The ED filed the first chargesheet in the case in May last year.
The agency and the CBI are investigating Modi, his uncle Mehul Choksi and others for alleged money laundering and corruption to perpetrate the alleged scam in the Brady House branch of PNB in Mumbai, that was unearthed last year. It has also attached his assets worth Rs 1,873.08 crore under the PMLA and has seized assets linked to him and his family worth Rs 489.75 crore.