New Delhi: In a major development in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam case, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has brought back from Hong Kong polished diamonds, pearls and other jewellery worth approximately Rs 1,350 crore that belonged to entities owned by Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi.
According to the ED, 108 consignments of various overseas entities belonging to Modi and Choksi were allegedly kept in the godown of a logistics company in Hong Kong.
“Values of these goods have been declared as Rs 1,350 crore approx. These include polished diamonds, pearls and silver jewellery…The consignments were brought to Navi Mumbai today (Wednesday) and they weigh approximately 2,340 kg,” an ED official told ThePrint.
According to a source in the ED, the jewels were flown in. “Once the Hong Kong authorities gave a clearance and customs cleared the consignments, the jewels were sent to India,” said the source.
While Modi is a diamantaire, Choksi is the managing director of ‘Gitanjali Gems’.
Choksi is also Modi’s maternal uncle. He took over Gitanjali Gems from his father Chinubhai Choksi in 1985 and built an extended product-portfolio by launching brands such as Gili, Nakshatra, Asmi, D’damas, Maya, Diya and Sangini.
How did the jewellery reach Hong Kong
According to a senior ED officer, these consignments were sent to Hong Kong from Dubai in early 2018. The ED had received an intelligence input about these valuables in July 2018, said the officer, following which they contacted authorities in Hong Kong and UAE.
“We were continuously engaged in discussion with the various authorities in Hong Kong and UAE to bring these valuables back to India. All these jewels are proceeds of crime,” the officer said.
The ED, in a statement, also said that various modalities were finalised and after completing all legal formalities, the consignments were brought back to India.
“Out of the 108 consignments, 32 belong to entities enrolled by Modi and rest to Choksi,” the senior officer quoted above added.
Earlier, the ED had successfully brought back 33 consignments of valuables from Dubai and Hong Kong in the Modi and Choksi fraud case. These were valued on arrival and subsequently seized in India. Independent valuers had then assessed these consignments to be worth Rs 137 crore approximately.
Subscribe to our YouTube channel.