PNB Scam-Accused Mehul Choksi Goes Missing in Antigua, Says Lawyer
Choksi has been residing in Antigua and Barbuda since 4 January, 2018.
Fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi, who is wanted by the CBI and the ED in connection with the Punjab National Bank fraud case, has reportedly gone missing in Antigua and Barbuda, his lawyer said, according to ANI.
“Mehul Choksi is missing. His family members are worried and anxious and had called me to discuss. Antigua police is investigating. Family is in the dark and worried about his safety,” his lawyer Vijay Aggarwal told ANI.
Media reports in Antigua said that the police have launched a search for Choksi, who reportedly left his home on Monday evening to go for dinner at a well-known restaurant in the southern part of the island.
Since then, he has not been seen. However, his vehicle was discovered in Jolly Harbour later in the evening, IANS reported, quoting local media.
Choksi, an accused in the over Rs 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case along with his nephew Nirav Modi, has been residing in Antigua and Barbuda since 4 January 2018.
He obtained his citizenship for Antigua and Barbuda via the Citizenship by Investment programme.
In September 2019, Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne had described Choksi as a “crook” and assured that he would be extradited to India after he exhausts his appeal.
“I can assure you that he will be ultimately deported after exhausting all his appeals. He will be extradited back to India to face whatever charges against him. It is just a matter of time,” Browne told ANI.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had, on 18 March, said that Choksi is being extradited to India to face the law, according to PTI.
The 59-year-old businessman had refused to return to India, citing that he fears “mob lynching.”
(With inputs from ANI, IANS and PTI)
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