After two decades of negotiations, India and Thailand have finally put ink to paper and sealed the extradition treaty between the two countries, says Rediff.com’s Vipin Vijayan, who is travelling with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Thailand
Besides that, in a major thrust towards uprooting the crime syndicate operating in both nations, a memorandum on cooperation in anti-money laundering has also been formalised.
The treaty has now opened the doors for India to get access to underworld fugitives hiding in Thailand.
This includes the likes of Muzakkir Mudassar Hussain Sayyed alias Munna Zingada, a Dawood Ibrahim aide wanted in India in numerous cases. Zingada has been in a Bangkok prison for over a decade in a firing case in 2001, in which, rival gang leader Chhota Rajan was injured and latter's right hand man Rohit Verma was killed.
The treaty signed by Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid and his Thai counterpart and Deputy Prime Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul, provides the legal framework for seeking extradition of fugitive offenders, including those involved in terrorism, transnational crimes, economic offences etc.
Following their bilateral meeting, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Thai counterpart Yingluck Shinawatra hoped that the extradition treaty would provide a legal basis for bilateral cooperation in dealing with elements acting against national interests.
“We are sending out a major signal of our shared commitment to combating terrorism, organised crime. drug trafficking and counterfeiting,” Dr Singh said.
The treaty provides for the extradition of any person who is wanted for trial or for the imposition or enforcement of a sentence by one contracting state and is found in the territory of the other contracting state.
The treaty would further strengthen the relationship between two law enforcement agencies by providing a firm legal basis for their bilateral cooperation.
Image: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with his Thai counterpart Yingluck Shinawatra on Thursday