The Debt Recovery Tribunal here on Saturday (July 6) directed fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi, who is currently lodged in a London prison, and his aides to pay more than ₹7,200 crore with interest to the defrauded Punjab National Bank.
Modi (48) is wanted in India as the main accused in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case amounting up to $2 billion. Presiding Officer Deepak Thakkar, who holds additional charge of Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT), Mumbai, passed two orders in two cases in favour of the Punjab National Bank.
“Defendant and his partners are ordered and directed to pay to the applicant (PNB) either jointly or severally the aggregate sum of ₹7029,06,87,950.65 with interest of 14.30 per cent per annum from June 30, 2018,” stated the DRT order. Passing another order, the judge directed Modi and others to pay ₹232,15,92,636 to PNB with interest 16.20 per cent from July 27, 2018.
An official from the tribunal said that the recovery officers with DRT will initiate further action. Modi was arrested by uniformed Scotland Yard officers in central London on March 19. He faces extradition to India as the “principal beneficiary” of the fraudulent issuance of letters of undertaking (LoUs) as part of a conspiracy to defraud PNB and then laundering the proceeds of crime.
The diamantaire has been behind bars at one of England’s most overcrowded prisons – Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP), Wandsworth.