The most wanted by Indian investigative agencies, fugitive billionaire diamantaire Nirav Modi, one of the prime accused in the Punjab National Bank scam, has been tracked down to the United Kingdom, almost after one year of he had escaped from the country.
According to UK-based newspaper The Telegraph report, the 48-year-old most wanted man now lives in an 8 million pound apartment in London’s West End and is now involved in a new diamond business.
An extradition request against Nirav Modi is pending since September last year before the UK authorities. Recently, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) attached properties of Nirav Modi worth 147.72 crore in connection with the 13,000 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case.
The rent of the three-bedroom flat, occupying half of a floor of the landmark Centre Point tower block, is estimated to cost 17,000 pounds a month (Rs 15,000 lakh). The UK daily has also released a video of Nirav Modi walking freely on the streets of London. Sporting a handle-bar moustache, wearing an Ostrich Hide jacket,estimated to cost 10,000 pounds, Nirav Modi is no longer bald.
As he is confronted by the newspaper over various allegations levelled against him, Nirav Modi says “no comments” and continues to smile. The report says despite his bank accounts being frozen by the Indian authorities and an Interpol red notice being issued for his arrest, Modi is involved in a new diamond business based in London.
A source has told the the UK daily that Modi had been given a National Insurance number by the Department for Work and Pensions, meaning he can legally work in Britain, and has used British bank accounts. The intel agencies had earlier provided input the Nirav Nodi had changed his appearance to disguise people.