Twenty-four Indians, who are accused of financial irregularities and are being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation for the last three years, are living abroad, the government told the Rajya Sabha on Thursday.
Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said the CBI was trying to get these accused back to the country. He added that extradition requests were issued for five accused in the last three years.
Businessman Nirav Modi, who along with his uncle Mehul Choksi, is accused of defrauding the Punjab National Bank of more than Rs 13,000 crore, is under investigation by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, said Muraleedharan. He has been in a jail in the United Kingdom since March.
According to the DRI, an application for Modi’s extradition has been forwarded to the Ahmedabad customs commissioner. He will file the request in a court in Surat.
Muraleedharan cited data from the Enforcement Directorate to say that 28 individuals, who are accused in criminal cases, were either residing abroad or had left the country before investigation began.
The minister of state for external affairs said Red Corner Notices were issued against 25 people, while extradition requests for 14 were also under consideration. Action under the Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018, was initiated against seven people, said Muraleedharan.
All the cases were registered between January 1, 2016, and May 31, 2019. Muraleedharan said three people facing charges under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act were brought back to India during this period. He added that necessary action had been initiated to bring the others back.