New Delhi: Mehul Choksi, the diamantaire wanted in India in connection with a Rs 13000 crore fraud, cannot be removed from Antigua and Barbuda, the country’s High Court ruled Friday. Choksi, the claimant, has argued in his civil lawsuit that the Attorney General of Antigua and the Chief of Police have a duty to conduct a thorough investigation and that he has an arguable claim that he was subjected to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. agency PTI reported. Choksi has requested relief, including a declaration that suggests he is entitled to a prompt and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding his forced removal from Antigua and Barbuda on or about May 23, 2021.
The 63-year-old diamantaire is wanted in India in connection with a Rs 13,000-crore fraud in the Punjab National Bank (PNB).
According to the court order, Mehul Choksi cannot be removed from Antigua and Barbuda’s territory unless the High Court rules after an interparty hearing and after Choksi has exhausted all other legal options, including appeals.
The defendants, on the other hand, argued that there is no valid complaint that exposes a cause of action for any failure to carry out an “effective” and “rapid” investigation within the scope of the jurisdiction under section 7 of the Constitution. As per PTI, the defendant also claimed that the claim was frivolous, vexatious, and an abuse of the court`s process.
Collusion, forced abduction, removal from Antigua and Barbuda, assault, and battery are among the incidents detailed in the Claimant Mehul Choksi`s affidavits in support of the claim. The Claimant was forcibly transported to the Commonwealth of Dominica aboard a boat, as per the report of Nature Isle News.
According to the claimant`s evidence, he asked to consult with his lawyers at the time he was approached by the individuals, but that request was denied.
Interpol removes red notice on Choksi
Earlier in March, the name of fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi wanted in a Rs 13,000-crore scam in the Punjab National Bank is understood to have been removed from the Interpol database of Red Notices on the basis of his plea to the Lyon-headquartered agency, people in the know of the said development. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) remained tight-lipped on the development.
The Red Notice is the highest form of alert issued by the 195-member country-strong Interpol to law enforcement agencies worldwide to locate and provisionally arrest a person pending extradition, surrender, or similar legal action.
Requests seeking comments of the CBI and the legal team of Choksi remained unanswered. The Interpol had issued the Red Notice against Choksi in 2018, nearly 10 months after he fled from India in January that year to take refuge in Antigua and Barbuda, where he had taken citizenship.
Choksi had challenged the CBI application seeking issuance of Red Notice against him, calling the case a result of political conspiracy, sources said. He had also raised questions on issues such as jail conditions in India, his personal safety and health, they added.