Antigua PM Assures India: Mehul Choksi’s Citizenship Will be Revoked, A Diplomatic Win For India

A big diplomatic win for India as fugitive businessman Mehul Choksi will soon be handed over for PNB fraud. The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, has assured India that he will be extradited after he runs out of all his legal options. 

Mehul Choksi is wanted in India for a PNB fraud amounting to Rs.13,500 crore.

The Antigua PM said that the revocation of citizenship will enable the way for his extradition to India, for standing trial in the case. Despite the fact that Antigua has no extradition treaty with India, its PM has assured that his nation won’t be providing a safe harbor for criminals, especially those who are involved in financial crimes.

Mehul Choksi (Image Credit: d147c1nbtf1gta.cloudfront.net)

Adding further, PM Browne also said that after Choksi’s citizenship is revoked, he will be deported to India for sure in an interview with Antigua Observer. Last year, in January 2018, the fraud businessman had left India, following the huge scam at Punjab National Bank. And after six months, it became known that he was, in fact, living in Antigua, after taking citizenship there.

On June 16 Choksi had cited he had medical issues in a bid to avoid investigation. 

"I'm unable to travel. I shall undertake travel to India as soon I'm medically fit," he wrote. The 59-year-old businessman had refused to come back to India, citing the fear of ‘mob lynching’.

However, Bombay HC has asked ED to consider a plea by to consider waiver of a Red Corner Notice against him to allow him to travel from Antigua to Miami in the US for medical treatment. Meanwhile, a team of specialists will submit a latest medical report on his current health condition and Choksi's lawyers are directed to file the report to the court on Monday, 9th July to ascertain if he is deemed fit to travel to India or not.

Interestingly, the process of his citizenship was completed even two months before the PNB scam was revealed publicly, in February. It was also the reason why he got a clean chit, previously, when Antigua asked India about the details of cases against him.

Both Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi had their passports canceled by India, in February, following the revealing of huge loan fraud at PNB, by the investigators. When it comes to the other fugitive businessman, Modi, he is currently said to be living in Brussels, the capital of Belgium.

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