Nirav Modi Travelled Several Countries With His Revoked Passport, Says CBI
June 20th, 2018 / 3:30 PM
The role of CBI has come under scrutiny after it revealed on Monday that absconding jeweller, Nirav Modi had managed to travel to several countries with a revoked passport. This happened even after information about his passport being cancelled by the Indian government was flashed in the Interpol central database on February 24, 2018.
Reportedly, the agency said that it had shared the warning of revocation of Nirav Modi & Mehul Chowski’s passport in the ‘diffusion’ notice issued through the Interpol on February 15. After no response from them, the passport was revoked on February 23. Additionally, the CBI said, they had also shared details of all five passports with the Interpol. Even though these passports are linked with one another, the numbers are different owing to either renewal or the booklets becoming full.
A diffusion notice is less formal than a red corner notice. It is a request to the Interpol, seeking the arrest of an individual in connection with a police investigation.
Issuing A Red Corner Notice
Even though Indian intelligence agencies in February had urged the Interpol to issue a red corner notice(RCN) against Nirav Modi, the International Criminal Police Organisation had insisted that an RCN could only be issued if charges were filed. At that time, only an FIR was filed against him.
Since then, both the CBI and ED had filed charge sheets in May, the RCN hasn’t been issued. The absence of a uniform international mechanism helped fugitive diamantaire to keep using those to travel through airports and possibly seaports as well.
There is also a confusion among government agencies as ED says he used six passports, MEA officials say all his five previous passports were physically cancelled and CBI says he travelled on revoked passports.
Nirav Modi Travelled Multiple Countries
Nirav Modi, whose whereabouts remain unknown to Indian intelligence agencies, had travelled to multiple countries.
As reported by Bloombergquint, while Modi travelled to New York, London, Hong Kong, and Paris between February 10 and March 28, CBI’s diffusion notice to all Interpol countries was not responded by any country except the UK, which stated that Modi was last seen in their country on May 31.
Reports from as recent as June 12 suggest that Modi has used an Indian passport to travel from London to Brussels on a Eurostar train.
NDTV had reported on June 17 that Indian intelligence agencies had traced Modi to Belgium. This led the agency to unearth half a dozen of Modi’s passports, out of which two were active for some time. Both the passports have since then been revoked by the Indian government.
Recently, the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had again urged the Interpol to issue an arrest warrant against Nirav Modi. Once his latest locations were ascertained, the government would begin the process of extradition. As of now, the Indian government has not made any formal extradition request.
Written by : Sromona Bhattacharyya
Edited by : Abhinav Joshi