New Delhi, Apr 24: An informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping will take place in China on April 27-28. During the meeting, India may push for extradition of Nirav Modi, the accused in multicrore fraud with Punjab National Bank (PNB), who is suspected to be hiding in Hong Kong. Though China has said it won’t interfere in Nirav Modi’s arrest but it is no secret that Beijing will take the final call.
If Nirav Modi gets arrested in Hong Kong, it would be a win-win situation for the Modi government and China. Getting Nirav Modi deported to India would boost the government’s image and China may use this as a bargaining chip, reported Times of India quoting sources. India has asked Hong Kong to arrest the main accused in the $2 billion bank fraud who is believed to be in Chinese territory, a former British colony which enjoys a high degree of autonomy.
The government on April 12 said it was awaiting a response from Hong Kong authorities on its request for provisional order of arrest of Nirav Modi. Raveesh Kumar, the spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, said India has requested the Hong Kong authorities to surrender Nirav Modi based on the extradition agreement for surrender of fugitive offenders signed between the two sides in 1997.
In a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha last week, V K Singh, Minister of State in the External Affairs, had said the request for the same was submitted to the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region on March 23. China has said that Hong Kong can accede to India’s request to arrest fugitive Indian diamond merchant Nirav Modi based on local laws and mutual judicial assistance agreements.
Nirav Modi, a regular on the lists of rich and famous Indians since 2013, along with his group companies — Diamond R US, Stellar Diamond and Solar Exports, and an uncle and business partner and others have been named in the huge scam, admitted by the PNB in February and leading to a massive upheaval in the country’s banking system. Modi owned a chain of boutiques in Hong Kong.