Fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi, who is wanted in India over the Rs 13,700-crore PNB fraud, was arrested in London and was produced in Westminster magistrates’ court at 3:30 pm on Wednesday. Metropolitan Police issued a statement which clearly indicated that the move was a big diplomatic win for India. The statement read: "Nirav Deepak Modi was arrested on behalf of the Indian Authorities".
However, TMC leader Mamata Banerjee has given the entire credit to the British reporter who confronted Nirav Modi on a busy London street.
On March 09, 2019, a two-minute video of the street encounter posted on Twitter provided the first visuals of Nirav, 48, in the British capital since he fled India early last year. In the clip, he refuses to answer whether he had applied for political asylum in the UK.
Referring to this, TMC leader not only attacked PM Modi's viral 'Mai Bhi Chowkidar' campaign but also made a sarcastic comment by playing around the Surname of Nirav Modi and PM Modi:
"Chaiwala and Chowkidar hone is kuch nahi hota. London Telegraph Reporter exposed Nirav Modi. Credit should go to the London reporter who exposed Narendra Modi, Sorry no Nirav Modi".
"You cannot see where he is hiding now one journalist is giving you this information. Where he is saying. It's election time so you will see all this. They are doing it on purpose. I don't want to give any credit to the BJP government for this", she added.
Earlier on Monday, a London court had issued arrest warrant against Modi, the main accused in the PNB scam case, in response to an Enforcement Directorate (ED) request for his extradition in a money laundering case.
Moreover, the Raigad administration completely demolished the sprawling seaside mansion of fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi in the district. Thirty kilos of explosives were used by the authorities. Excavators were used to open up the pillars of the bungalow, called Roopanya, to make space for fixing the detonators. A special technical team was called to fix them.
On December 28, 2018, British authorities had informed India that bank fraud fugitive Nirav Modi is living in the UK, the government has said. Replying to a question, Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh told Rajya Sabha that National Central Bureau of Manchester conveyed to Indian agencies that their investigations have led to the location of Nirav Modi in the UK.
In August earlier this year, Republic TV was the first to track down the exact addresses of the PNB-scam accused, which located to London. The Gitanjali Gems chief's hideouts in London were also mentioned in extradition notices that were served to Nirav Modi by the CBI. The fugitive fraud-accused's first hideout was located in London's fashionable and central Westminster area.
Nirav Modi is the prime accused in the Rs 13,400 crore PNB scam. He and his uncle Mehul Choksi are being investigated by the agencies for their role in the scam. The scam, which reportedly began in 2011, was detected in January this year, after which PNB officials reported it to the probe agencies. Two criminal complaints were filed by the ED in this regard after taking cognisance of CBI FIRs.