ED attaches Nirav Modi, Choksi's assets worth Rs 218 crore

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New Delhi (IANS): The Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday said it has attached assets in India and abroad worth Rs 218 crore belonging to fugitive diamond merchants Nirav Modi and his maternal uncle Mehul Choksi.

The duo, who have fled the country, are accused of defrauding state-run Punjab National Bank of Rs 13,500 crore. 

A senior official of the agency said: "A villa at a foreign location worth Rs 27 crore belonging to Choksi has been attached."

The assets attached by the ED include a Hyderabad property worth Rs 120 crore belonging to A.P. Gems & Jewellery Park. 

On specific intelligence, diamonds with a market value of Rs 18.76 crore belonging to the Firestar Group related to Nirav Modi were also seized, the official added.

The agency also attached a flat worth Rs 1.70 crore in Mumbai's Trump Tower. It is in the name of Choksi's daughter. 

The official revealed that the agency has attached an overseas flat worth Rs 51 crore belonging to Mihir Bhansali, a close aide of Nirav Modi. 

The official also said that Letters Rogatory have been sent to the authorities of foreign jurisdictions to enforce the provisional attachment orders.

The financial probe agency has till date attached properties worth Rs 4,488 crore in the PNB fraud case.

Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi of Gitanjali Group are under probe by both the Central Bureau of Investigation and the ED. The ED had on May 24 and May 26 filed chargesheets against the two. Non-bailable warrants have also been issued against them.

The Interpol had issued a Red Corner Notice (RCN) against Nirav Modi, his brother Neeshal and sister Purvi, who are Belgian citizens, Bhansali and Aditya Nanvati (both close associates of Nirav Modi).

However, a RCN request against Choksi, who acquired Antiguan citizenship earlier this year, is pending with the Interpol.

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