The government will liaise with the UK authorities for early extradition of Nirav Modi, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Thursday, hours after a British court rejected the fugitive businessman’s plea against being extradited to India. The diamantaire, wanted in India on charges of fraud and money laundering in the estimated USD 2-billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam case, lost his legal battle against extradition on all grounds as District Judge Samuel Goozee also concluded that there are no human rights concerns that his medical needs would not be addressed as per several Indian government assurances.
Replying to a query during an online media briefing, MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that since the Westminster Magistrate’s Court has recommended to the UK Home Secretary for Nirav Modi’s extradition, “the Government of India would liaise with the UK authorities for his early extradition to India.” On the request of the CBI and the ED, Modi’s extradition from the UK was sought in August 2018. He was arrested and produced before the Senior District Judge at Westminster Magistrate’s court on March 20, 2019. Since then he is facing extradition proceedings while in judicial custody.
The final hearing in this case was held on January 7-8, 2021, while the Westminster Magistrate’s Court in London earlier in the day pronounced that he be extradited to India to stand trial. “Dismissing the mental health concerns raised by Nirav Modi, the judge observed that Nirav Modi conspired to destroy evidence and intimidate witnesses,” Srivastava said.