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UK Govt May Hold up Mallya, Nirav Modi Extradition Over Delay in Illegal Migrants Pact

According to sources, UK authorities have asked the Indian authorities to abide by its side of the bargain of assisting UK in deporting over 75,000 illegal Indian migrants.

Arunima | CNN-News18Arunima24

Updated:June 12, 2018, 11:28 PM IST

New Delhi: Extradition of fugitive businessmen Nirav Modi, Lalit Modi and Vijay Mallya seems to be heading towards a diplomatic logjam as the UK is now putting up conditions to cooperate with the Indian administration.

According to sources, UK authorities have asked the Indian authorities to abide by its side of the bargain of assisting UK in deporting over 75,000 illegal Indian migrants.

MoS Kiren Rijiju had drafted a MoU in January with the UK government on the deportation of illegal migrants, which was supposed to be signed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his April visit. PM Modi, however, did not sign the pact.

The issue of the long-pending MoU on illegal immigrants was raised by UK Minister of State for Countering Extremism Baroness Williams during her talks with Rijiju on Monday.

According to sources, Williams has conveyed the message to her Indian counterpart that the UK wouldn’t help with the extradition of Mallya and the two others unless India honours its side of the deal.

In the meeting between Rijiju and Williams, the UK side confirmed the presence of Nirav Modi in Britain.

While Rijiju has signed the deal with Britain, it still awaits PM Modi’s seal of approval.

A government official has said that this was perhaps one of the few instances when India delayed formalising a bilateral agreement despite signing the draft deal.

The range of concerns include fear of mass deportation, a consent clause and possible security breaches.

According to British authorities, who have been pressing consistently on returning illegal immigrants, the largest group of such people in the UK is from India.

Around 5,000 Indians voluntarily returned to India in 2017 and around 700 were deported.

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| Edited by: Sanchari Chatterjee
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