The Delhi high court on Wednesday dismissed a petition filed by sacked IPL commissioner Lalit Modi facing Enforcement Directorate probe into allegations of financial irregularities seeking restoration of his passport.
Modi, who is now in London and had been summoned several times by the ED in the past, had moved the high court in November last year against the decision of chief passport officer in Delhi who upheld revocation of his passport by Mumbai Regional Passport Officer.
“After this order, the centre is at liberty to seek alternative option to ensure Modi’s presence for the probe including his extradition from London. India and UK have extradition treaty”, centre’s lawyer Jatan Singh told HT.
The court had sought the views of the external affairs ministry, Regional Passport Office (RPO) in Mumbai and chief passport officer (CPO) in New Delhi before taking a decision.
Singh said the court upheld the centre’s view that “under the rules the passport authorities have right to revoke the passport of any individual if it is in the public interest”
Modi’s lawyer Mukul Rohatgi had argued that passport authorities` decision to cancel his passport was not in conformity with the provisions of the Passport Act and the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution.
Modi, in his plea also said the passport authorities, while revoking his passport, did not consider threat to his life from the underworld.
He contended the ED did not decide on his plea to quiz him through video conferencing and instead recommended revocation of his passport.