In a blow to Indian public sector banks, the Mumbai bench of National Company Law Tribunal has ordered the liquidation of fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi's scam-scarred firm, Firestar Diamond International Pvt. Ltd. (FDIPL). The fugitive diamond merchant is wanted in a multi-crore PNB fraud case.
The decision to liquidate Nirav Modi's company was delivered last week by the Mumbai NCLT bench, headed by Suchitra Kanuparthi (Member-Judicial) and V. Nallasenapathy (Member-Technical), news agency IANS reported.
According to experts and officials, this was the first-ever liquidation order for any company embroiled in the fraud schemed by the Modi-Choksi before they fled the country, the agency reported.
Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi are key accused in Rs 14,000 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) case. While Nirav Modi is currently lodged in a British jail, Mehul Choksi is residing in Antigua and Barbuda.
Nirav Modi has been behind bars at Wandsworth Prison in south-west London since his arrest on March 19 on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard on charges brought by the Indian government. Modi's extradition trial is scheduled between May 11 and 15 this year, with the case management hearings in the matter set to begin once all the evidence has been handed in to the court for the trial.
Last month, market regulator SEBI had slapped a total fine of Rs 5 crore on absconding businessman Mehul Choksi, Gitanjali Gems and another individuals for violating various regulations, including listing norms. Choksi is the promoter and managing director of Gitanjali Gems.