The great chase for Nirav Modi: From Brady House to London’s Holborn

The Asian Age.  | Draksha Sharma

India, All India

The British police on Wednesday arrested wanted fugitive jeweller Nirav Modi.

Diamond Merchant Nirav Modi is needed in connection to Rs 13,500-crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam. (Photo: File)

New Delhi: The British police on Wednesday arrested wanted fugitive jeweller Nirav Modi.

UK authorities within three days turned an arrest warrant into action after India requested Nirav Modi's extradition.

Why Nirav Modi is wanted in India?

Diamond Merchant Nirav Modi is needed in connection to Rs 13,500-crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam that raised questions over the creditability of India's banking system.  

On the morning of 14 February, the biggest scam in India's banking history was unearthed at PNB's Brady House branch in Mumbai.

The revelation sent shock waves across the nation and soon a multi-agency probe was ordered.

As days progressed, diamond tycoon Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi were found at the centre of the fraud. The duo took loans from India’s largest lending bank to finance overseas loans and expand their business.

The nephew and uncle duo had left the country weeks before the scam was detected.

Here is the timeline of the case:

January 29, 2018: PNB's Deputy General Manager of Mumbai branch, Avineesh Nepalia detects a loss caused by issuing eight fraud Letters of Undertaking (LoUs) amounting to Rs 280 crore to overseas banks. He sniffed the role of bank's employees and lodges a complaint with CBI.

January 31, 2018: Income Tax officials raids offices of Nirav Modi across India.

February 5, 2018: The CBI registered First Information Report (FIR) against Nirav Modi, his brother Nishal, wife Ami and Mehul Chinubhai Chowski of Diamond R and Stellar Diamonds.

February 14, 2018: Punjab National Bank reached  CBI to complain about Nirav Modi for illegally transferring about Rs11,000 crore of taxpayers' money abroad from its Mumbai branch. Punjab National Bank also alleged that its own employees helped Nirav Modi in carrying big-fat scam.

February 15, 2018: Enforcement Directorate registers a money laundering case against Nirav Modi under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

February 16, 2018: The CBI seeks Interpol's help to arrest Nirav Modi.

February 17, 2018: Government revokes passports of Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi for four weeks.

February 18, 2018: CBI searches PNB's Brady House branch in Mumbai, questions officials and makes some arrests in the case.

February 24, 2018: The government cancels passports of Nirav and Mehul.

February 27, 2018: A magistrate's court issues a bailable arrest warrant against celebrity jeweller Nirav Modi.

February 28, 2018: The CBI sends a mail to Nirav Modi to ask him to corporate in the investigation.

March 2018: The UK authorities confirm that Nirav Modi is in London.

April 5, 2018: Following the request from the ED, regulators in Belgium freeze two bank accounts of billionaire diamond jeweller Nirav Modi. 

April 8, 2018: A court in Mumbai issues non-bailable arrest warrants for the nephew-uncle duo on the CBI’s request.

June 29, 2018: International Police Agency, Interpol issues a red corner notice against Nirav Modi.

August 20 2018: India lodges an application with the UK Home Office to initiate the process of extraditing Nirav Modi.

October 1, 2018: The ED seizes around Rs 6.4 billion of Nirav Modi’s assets in India and abroad.

March 8, 2019: The UK Home Office deems Nirav Modi’s case “fit for extradition” and transfers case to the District Court in Westminister, which later issued the summons to Nirav Modi.

March 20, 2019: UK police arrests Nirav Modi.