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Rediff.com  » Business » Nirav Modi's siblings face CBI, ED action

Nirav Modi's siblings face CBI, ED action

September 10, 2018 23:19 IST

Both Purvi Deepak Modi and Neeshal Modi are accused in the $2-billion scam allegedly orchestrated by their elder brother Nirav Modi and uncle Mehul Choksi in Punjab National Bank, they said.

Probe agencies have moved to stifle movements of fugitive billionaire Nirav Modi's family members, with the Enforcement Directorate getting an Interpol Red Corner Notice issued against his sister and the CBI making an extradition request against his brother, in connection with the alleged $2-billion PNB banking fraud.

 

Interpol has issued a Red Corner Notice (RCN) against 44-year-old Purvi Deepak Modi on the request of the Enforcement Directorate, and the CBI has moved an application to extradite 34-year-old Neeshal Modi, officials said on Monday.

In its RCN issued against a fugitive, the Interpol asks its 192 member countries to arrest or detain the person if spotted in their countries after which extradition or deportation proceedings can begin.

Both Purvi Deepak Modi and Neeshal Modi are accused in the $2-billion scam allegedly orchestrated by their elder brother Nirav Modi and uncle Mehul Choksi in Punjab National Bank, they said.

The agencies are aiming to bring both his family members back from Belgium as India has extradition treaty with the European country.

The Enforcement Directorate has charged Purvi Deepak Modi with laundering the alleged proceeds of the biggest banking scam in the country.

Neeshal Modi, against whom a Red Corner Notice was issued on the request of the CBI, has been located in Belgium, the officials said.

The agency has moved an extradition application for bringing him back, they said.

The application has been submitted to the home ministry which will send it to Belgium through the external affairs ministry, they said.

He is alleged to be the beneficiary of funds siphoned off, instrumental in introducing dummy partners and changing pattern of partnership structure of companies, they said.

Neeshal Modi, along with his brother Nirav Modi and Choksi, fled the country in the first week of January this year, weeks before the scam surfaced in Brady House branch of Punjab National Bank in Mumbai.

Nirav Modi has been located in the United Kingdom, and Choksi is in Antigua where he has taken citizenship, they said.

The scam pertains to the alleged issuance of fraudulent Letters of Undertaking of more than $2 billion to companies of Nirav Modi and Choksi by Punjab National Bank's Brady House branch during 2011-17, officials said.

An LoU is a guarantee given by an issuing bank to Indian banks with branches abroad to grant short-term credit to the applicant.

Nirav Modi and his companies allegedly availed credit from the overseas branches of Indian banks using the fraudulent PNB guarantees given through LoUs and letters of credit issued by the Brady House branch which were not repaid, bringing the liability on the state-run bank, the officials said.

Both Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi have refused to join investigation in spite of repeated summons by the agencies to appear for questioning.

Choksi has cited threat to his life, health condition, media bias, and poor jail conditions in his appeal before the Interpol to stall issuance of Red Corner Notice against him, they said.

The issue will now be put before an internal five-member committee of the Interpol which will hear the plea of Choksi and arguments of Indian agencies in October before deciding the issue.

Indian agencies are staring at lengthy legal battles before any success is achieved in bringing these fugitives back in India to face trial in the case, they said.

The family is believed to have planned their exit well in advance as they left the country weeks before the scam surfaced in the Brady House branch of PNB in Mumbai.

Photograph: Reuters

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