New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday approached Interpol for a Red Corner Notice against absconding billionaire jewellers Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi who are allegedly the brains behind the over USD 2 billion scam in Punjab National Bank.
The Red Corner Notice will reportedly allow enforcement agencies of the member countries of Interpol to try to find and arrest them in their respective countries.
Meanwhile, it has been reported in the media that Modi has fled to the UK where he is claiming political asylum.
Modi along with his wife Ami, a US citizen, brother Nishal a Belgian, and uncle Choksi, Gitanjali groups promoter, had fled the country before the bank approached the CBI with a complaint against his companies for allegedly cheating through fraudulent issuance of Letters of Undertakings (LoUs) and Foreign Letters of Credit (FLCs).
The CBI, in its chargesheets filed last month, alleged that Modi, through his companies, siphoned off funds to the tune of Rs 6,498.20 crore using fraudulent LoUs issued from PNBs Brady House branch in Mumbai. Choksi swindled Rs 7080.86 crore, making it possibly the biggest banking scam in the country, it alleged.
The PNB had approached the CBI with a complaint on the basis of which the agency had registered an FIR against Modi.
It is alleged that Modi and Choksi through their companies availed credit from overseas branches of Indian banks using the fraudulent guarantees of the PNB given through LoUs and letters of credit which were not repaid bringing the liability on the state-run bank.
An LoU is a guarantee given by an issuing bank to Indian banks having branches abroad to grant short-term credit to the applicant.