Gitanjali Gems promoter Mehul Choksi, a key accused in the Punjab National Bank Ltd. scam case, moved a special court in Delhi today, seeking cancellation of a non-bailable warrant (NBW) issued against him.
Choksi claimed that he cannot travel because of his medical condition, according to the application moved by his lawyer Sanjay Abbot before the special Central Bureau of Investigation judge JC Jagdale. He added that he could not disclose his current location as he was facing a threat to his life from various persons.
The diamantaire said that he never sought to avoid investigation or the probe agencies and had duly responded to all the communication that he received from them. He also contended that his case was completely different from that of his relative and absconding billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi.
Choksi said the Enforcement Directorate attached his assets after registering a case based on the first information report that CBI filed pertaining to Nirav Modi even when he (Choksi) had nothing to do with it.
The judge has directed the CBI to file a reply and posted the matter for hearing on July 11. The special CBI court, after taking cognisance of the second charge sheet filed in the PNB fraud case, had last month ordered the issuance of the non-bailable warrant against Choksi.
The issuance of the alleged fraudulent letters of understanding is said to be the crux of the mega financial fraud. A letter of understanding is a guarantee which is given by an issuing bank to Indian banks having branches abroad to grant a short-term credit to the applicant. In case of default, the bank issuing the letter of understanding has to pay the liability to the credit-giving bank along with accruing interest.
Modi and his uncle Choksi are among the main accused in the fraud case pegged at over Rs 13,400 crore. They have been booked in nearly half-a-dozen cases related to the bank fraud.