Nirav Modi – PNB scam: Latest developments

The Income Tax Department on Tuesday raided 20 premises linked to Gitanjali Gems promoter Mehul Choksi and associated firms in connection with a tax evasion case, official sources said. The searches were being conducted in Mumbai, Pune, Surat, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and few other cities against 13 companies linked to Choksi and the Gitanjali Gems.

CBI examined 10 PNB officials, including present Executive Director level officers. 8 Executives of Nirav Modi’s company and 10 Gitanjali group officials have also been questioned. CBI also said that they have found a new farmhouse of Nirav Modi in Alibagh near Mumbai where searches are underway.

* News agency Reuters reported that CBI counsel has said to the court that Punjab National Bank fraud conspiracy may have been going on since 2008

* The Supreme Court (SC) has agreed to hear a plea seeking an independent inquiry into the scam perpetrated on Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam, allegedly by diamond billionaire Nirav Modi. A bench led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra will hear the plea filed by lawyer Vineet Dhanda.

* Ratings agency Fitch on Tuesday, placed Punjab National Bank’s (PNB) Viability Rating of ‘bb’ on Rating Watch Negative. The decision means that the country’s second largest lender may see a rating downgrade.

* Moody’s has also placed the country’s second largest lender under review for downgrade. Currently, PNB has an overall Baa2 rating with a stable outlook from Moody’s.

* On Tuesday morning, 30 employees of Gitanjali Gems and Punjab National Bank reached CBI headquarters in Mumbai.

* Prime accused Nirav Modi, in a letter, has hit back at Punjab National Bank, saying its ‘overzealousness’ has shut the doors on his ability to clear his dues, which he claims are much lower than the Rs 11,400 crore that the bank has gone public with.

* IndusInd Bank in a filing with the exchanges has said that it has an exposure to Gitanjali Gems.

* Nirav Modi’s lawyer Vijay Aggarwal has said, “agencies are making noises in the media but they will not be able to prove the charges in a court of law”. “Like 2G Scam & Bofors matter this case will also collapse,” he added.


Source: Times Of India

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