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PNB fraud: Passport revoked, probe biased so can’t come back to India, Mehul Choksi tells CBI

Nirav Modi’s uncle and owner of Gitanjali group has sent a seven-page letter to the CBI

business Updated: Mar 08, 2018 15:19 IST
Charul Shah
Charul Shah
Hindustan Times
PNB fraud,passport revoked,health issue
Gitanjali group owner Mehul Choksi.(HT File Photo)

In a fresh seven-page letter to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Mehul Choksi, one of the accused in the Rs12,600 crore Punjab National Bank fraud, on Thursday said he would not return to India as his passport has been revoked, his family and he face a threat in the country, and the investigations underway are unfair.

The “issue”, the diamond merchant said, has been politicised by parties “with a view of glorifying their own interests”.

Nirav Modi’s maternal uncle also claimed he was not in a position to travel because of a persisting health problem. “I had a cardiac procedure in the first week of February 2018, and there is still work pending on the same. The entire procedure could not be completed on all veins due to the danger to the kidney, and therefore I am not allowed to travel for at least a period of four to six months,” Choksi said in the letter.

The Gitanjali group owner expressed concern about not getting proper healthcare if he returns to India and is arrested. “I would not be able to get proper healthcare, and would be provided treatment in a government hospital. I would be denied treatment in a private hospital.”

However, his prime contention is that his passport has been revoked as he has been deemed a “security threat”. “I wish to point out that the Regional Passport Office, Mumbai, has not given me any explanation as to why my passport has been suspended and as to how I am a security threat to India. This goes to show that my passport has been suspended in a manner which violates my constitutional rights,” Choksi wrote.

He further said that he was being threatened by individuals with whom he had business relationships. “As there has been a complete and sudden closure of business, my employees, customers, creditors, etc., have started to show their animosity towards me,” the letter said.

The businessman further alleged that multiple investigating agencies “are after my life”. “The CBI has seized my office servers and I have no record of my business dealings. I am further being deprived of my basic right to communicate, and the seizure of my servers has effectively denied me my fundamental right to defend myself against the allegations levelled against me.”

Choksi alleged that investigating agencies have grossly abused the process of law. “The seizure of my movable/immovable properties, bank accounts and shutting down of all my offices in India have caused prejudice against me. The investigating agencies are acting with a pre-determined mind, which is hampering the process of law and interfering with the course of justice,” he said.

First Published: Mar 08, 2018 15:16 IST