New Delhi, July 23: Gitanjali Gems owner Mehul Choksi on Monday told a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court that he fears being lynched if he return to India to cooperate in the investigation of multi-crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case involving him and celebrity jeweller Nirav Modi. Citing health issues, Choksi has also urged the court to cancel non-bailable warrants issued against him. Also Read - Mehul Choksi Still A Citizen of Antigua, Unlikely To Return Before 2027

In an application moved before the special PMLA court, Choksi, a key accused in the PNB scam claimed that he faces a threat to his life not only from his former employees and debtors but also from jail staff and inmates (where he would be launched if he returns). Also Read - Will Nirav Modi Be Finally Sent Back to India? Judgment Day in UK Extradition Case on February 25

“There have been various cases of mob lynching in India. This recent trend of mob lynching and general public giving justice on the road is growing. Even the applicant faces a similar threat as there are several persons who have grievances and anger against him (Choksi),” the application read. Also Read - PNB Fraud Case: Nirav Modi Extradition Trial Resumes in UK Court

“As it became impossible for the applicant’s company to function and the employees were not paid their salaries and debtors did not get their money back, all these persons have become agitated against the applicant and he is now facing threat to his life,”  it claimed.

The application further stated that Choksi also faces a threat of extortion by jail staff and danger to his life by prison inmates if he is brought to India.

“Choksi never shied away from the investigation and has responded to all the communication he received from the investigating agencies. His ill health, the revocation of his passport and threat to his life are the main circumstances why he is unable to travel to India,” it stated.

Earlier last month, Choksi had move a similar application in the court, seeking cancellation of non-bailable warrant. He was represented by his lawyer Sanjay Abbot in the special CBI court.

On April 8, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had issued Non-Bailable Warrants (NBW) against celebrity jeweller Nirav Modi and his uncle and business partner, Mehul Choksi.

(With agency inputs)