The United Kingdom (UK) has permitted the extradition of drug syndicate kingpin Kishan Singh from London to India, a major diplomatic victory for the Indian government after a two-year legal battle.
Singh, accused of running an international drug cartel, was a high-value target for India and is being sent to the country.
On Sunday, March 21, he was repatriated to the country on a flight to stand trial in the case, sources told India Today.
This is the second important handover by the UK within a year. Last year, Sanjeev Chawla, a bookie, and key accused in the 2000 cricket match-fixing racket, was extradited through Delhi Police.
Singh, a UK citizen who hails from Rajasthan, was apprehended by British authorities on August 23, 2018, at the request of Indian authorities, but was later granted bail.
The UK's Westminster Magistrates' Court, relied on the evidence against him during the extradition hearing, ordering his extradition to India in May 2019. Singh, however, contested the extradition on grounds that he would not get a fair trial if he were sent back to India. The court, nevertheless, did not accept his arguments.
38-year-old Singh has been accused of supplying amphetamines, mephedrone (meow meow), and other recreational party drugs to India.
The case was uncovered when discus thrower and Commonwealth Games silver medalist Harpreet Singh was arrested in February 2017 by the police.
Two other alleged accomplices of Kishan Singh, Harnish Sarpal and Amandeep Singh, were also apprehended by the police from Delhi, which recovered 25 kg mephedrone from their possession. Kishan Singh will be lodged in Delhi's Tihar jail, as per the extradition conditions.
The latest extradition order comes within a month of a London court judgment that fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi could be repatriated to India in connection with the PNB (Punjab National Bank) scam.
Besides Modi, the UK is likely to soon extradite fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya as well. Mallya, accused in a bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines, has been in the UK since March 2016.