Nirav Modi has been dealt a second blow in the space of just two days - one that he will feel tangibly - as the UK court where he appeared following his arrest by London authorities has rejected the fugitive diamantaire's bail application. As a result, Nirav Modi will remain in custody till March 29 when the next hearing will be held.
Tellingly, the judge, while rejecting the bail application, said that there was substantial grounds to believe that Nirav Modi would fail to surrender if he were granted bail.
With Vijay Mallya's lawyer Anand Doobay representing him in the court, Nirav Modi's side's argument was that the charges were politically motivated and that he had been cooperating with agencies. He refused to give consent for his extradition.
In terms of the specifics of his arguments, Nirav Modi put up a brazen defence, attempting to tell the court that he had only found out of the PNB scam when he attempted to get a Letter of Understanding (LoU) but was told that he couldn't and it was illegal. The LoUs had served as the medium by which Nirav Modi had defrauded Indian banks to the tune of Rs 11,400 crore, by using the letters sanctioned by an errant PNB branch to claim massive loans from overseas branches of Indian banks.
Earlier on Wednesday, Republic TV had learnt that Nirav Modi had been arrested in London on account of the arrest warrant that had been issued against him by the Westminster Magistrates court following India's efforts to extradite him. The London Metropolitan Police confirmed the arrest by issuing the following statement:
"Nirav Deepak Modi, 48 (Date of Birth 24.02.71), was arrested on behalf of the Indian Authorities on Tuesday, 19 March, in Holborn. He will appear in custody at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Wednesday, 20 March."
The developments come barely two weeks after Nirav Modi made his first appearance since the PNB bank scam broke out, being confronted by reporters during a walkabout in London. At that time, the diamantaire had remained brazen, something that was picked up on by Omar Abdullah following the arrest: