In what seems to be a major positive news to get back economic offenders,Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda Gaston Browne has said that the citizenship of Mehul Choksi, involved in Punjab National Bank scam will be revoked and he will be repatriated back to India.
Speaking to Local newspaper Antigua Observer he said,“His citizenship was processed; he got through but the reality is his citizenship will be revoked and he will be repatriated to India"
Adding,"I can assure you, after he has exhausted all of his legal options, he will be extradited.”
In his statement PM seems to be sending a message that his country is not a safe haven for economic offenders.
He said, "It’s not a case that we are trying to provide any safe harbour for criminals, for those who are involved in financial crimes,”
Choksi's case in Antiguan courts and the govt there has told "Indian Government..that criminals have fundamental rights, too, and Choksi has a right to go to court and defend his position."
India continues to pursue Choksi's return with the Govt of Antigua through diplomatic and legal channels. New Delhi has already sent extradition request to the country. Mehul Choksi had surrendered his Indian passport to the High Commission in Guyana in January of 2019.
The development comes days ahead of G20 summit in Osaka during which PM will strongly raise the issue of economic offenders being provided a safe haven.