United Nations, Sep 27 : The Antigua and Barbuda government assured India of full cooperation in the extradition of fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi, who is a prime accused in the Rs. 14,000-crore Punjab National Bank scam, but gave no time frame due to “legal issues and court procedures.”
Mehul Choksi along with his nephew Nirav Modi is accused in the Rs 13,600-crore Punjab National Bank fraud case.
External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said “Antigua’s Foreign Minister Chet Greene assured External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday when they met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting, about extraditing fugitive jewellery merchant Mehul Choksi as soon as the legal formalities are over.”
Greene, who had requested the meeting, told her that Prime Minister Gaston Alfonso Browne and the government were fully behind complying with India’s request for extraditing Choksi, Kumar said.
Sushma Swaraj asked that he be extradited expeditiously and Greene said there were internal legal and court procedures that had to be gone through to comply with the nation’s laws and as soon as they were taken care of Antigua would extradite him, according to Kumar.
Choksi, who is wanted in India over his alleged involvement in a scheme that defrauded Punjab National Bank of $2 billion, has reportedly taken the citizenship of the Caribbean island nation.