New Delhi: In an affidavit filed before the Dominica High Court, fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi claimed to be a “law-abiding citizen.” Choksi stated in his affidavit that he left India solely to seek medical treatment in the United States.
On Sunday (June 6, 2021), the fugitive diamantaire also revealed the names of his alleged abductors to Antiguan police, adding that Indian authorities can “interview” him at any time as part of an ongoing investigation against him.
“I have extended an invitation to the Indian authorities to interview me and ask any questions that they may have of me in relation to any investigation that they are conducting against me,” the fugitive diamantaire said in an eight-page submission, according to The Times of India.
“I did not elude Indian law enforcement. “There was no warrant issued against me by Indian law enforcement authorities when I left India to seek medical treatment in the United States of America,” Choksi was quoted as saying in the report.
Meanwhile, Antigua police have launched an investigation into Mehul Choksi’s possible kidnapping from Antigua on May 23, 2021, according to Antigua News Room.
Choksi’s lawyers, according to Prime Minister Gaston Browne, wrote to the Police Commissioner with the names of the people he believes kidnapped him.
According to Antigua News Room, PM Browne also stated that the Antigua police and government are taking the allegations seriously.
The Dominican court, which adjourned the matter of Mehul Choksi’s detention on Thursday, granted him interim relief from immediate repatriation to India. Choksi is accused in the Rs 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank scam.
According to local media reports, his legal team colluded with opposition leaders to put pressure on the judiciary, which, rather than questioning Choksi’s illegal entry from Antigua to Dominica, believed his lawyers’ version of his kidnapping.
In January 2018, the fugitive businessman was granted Antigua and Barbuda citizenship. He is embroiled in a legal battle to avoid extradition to India.
Choksi went missing from Antigua on May 23 after going out for dinner, and he was quickly apprehended in Dominica. He was charged with illegal entry by Dominican police after allegedly fleeing Antigua and Barbuda in an attempt to avoid extradition to India.
Antigua Prime Minister Gaston Browne wanted his citizenship to be revoked, and in a letter sent in 2019, he stated unequivocally that Choksi would not be allowed to enter Antigua and should be deported back to India.
(With ANI inputs)