UK court clears Nirav Modi’s extradition to India

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Nirav Modi (Image Source: Twitter/Kishore Jain)

India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesman Anurag Srivastava said that since the Westminster Magistrate’s Court “has recommended Nirav Modi’s extradition to the UK Home Secretary, the government of India would liaise with the UK authorities for his early extradition to India.”

On Thursday, a UK court cleared fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi’s extradition to India as the court ruled that he has a case to answer the Indian courts and no evidence indicates that he will not receive a fair trial in India. Modi lost a nearly two-year-long legal battle against extradition. Modi is wanted for his alleged involvement in the ₹14,00 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud. 

UK district judge Samuel Goozee said: “I am satisfied that Nirav Modi’s extradition to India is in compliance per human rights.” “There is no evidence that if extradited Nirav Modi will not get justice,” said the judge. 

The judge further said: “I do not accept that Nirav Modi was involved in legitimate business. I find no genuine transactions and believe there is a process of dishonesty.” 

The court has sent the case to UK Home Secretary Priti Patel to decide whether to order his extradition to India. Pate has two months to decide whether to order the extradition. Modi can appeal to the UK high court against his extradition. However, such an appeal would not be heard until after Patel’s decision. 

The Indian government has said that it will request Modi’s early extradition to India. India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesman Anurag Srivastava said that since the Westminster Magistrate’s Court “has recommended Nirav Modi’s extradition to the UK Home Secretary, the government of India would liaise with the UK authorities for his early extradition to India.”

Meanwhile, as per media reports, an official said on Friday that Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail has kept a special cell ready to lodge Modi. The official said that once Modi is brought to Mumbai, he will be kept in a high-security barrack. He said: “Preparations for lodging Nirav Modi in the jail have been completed and the prison cell is ready for him, whenever he is extradited.”

In January 2018, Modi fled India siphoning millions of money. Modi remains in a London prison since 2019 when he was arrested from a metro station in London on an extradition warrant.

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