NEW DELHI: Top government officials have confirmed that the Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre is moving ahead at a quick pace with its plan to bring back economic offenders from the West Indies.
The officials told IANS that the government has commissioned a long-range Air India Boeing plane to carry out this important mission. Sources said that senior officers of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) will take off from India to the West Indies with an aim to bring these fugitives back to India.
It is to be noted that fugitive billionaire businessman Mehul Choksi and promoter of Winsome Diamonds, Jatin Mehta, have made use of a paid citizenship programme provided by some Caribbean nations in order to escape facing law in India.
Jatin Mehta acquired the citizenship of St Kitts and Nevis some years ago, while Mehul Choksi recently managed to get citizenship of Antigua and Barbuada. It is to be noted that these islands provide visa-free travel to 132 countries.
According to investigators, Indian economic offenders are now easily acquiring the citizenship of Caribbean nations through investment. The investigators rued the fact that lack of extradition treaties with these island nations have made these places a safe haven for fugitive rich Indians.
It is learnt that the main targets of this mission are Choksi and his fraud-accused nephew Nirav Modi. Indian agencies may pick up Choksi from the Caribbean and it is likley that Nirav Modi, who is currently hiding in Europe, would be sequestered on the return route from Europe.
Dominica and St Lucia give citizenship and a valid passport for just $100,000, while the citizenship of Grenada comes at $200,000.
(with agency inputs)