CBI Registers 3 More Cases Against Fugitive Bizman Mehul Choksi

New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered two fresh FIRs against fugitive diamentaire Mehul Choksi and two jewellery brands–Nakshatra Brands Limited and Gitanjali Gems Limited–for defrauding a consortium of banks of over Rs 6,000 crore.

CBI officials received complaints from Vijay Kumar Wadhwa, deputy general manager of the zonal office of the Punjab National Bank in Mumbai, against Nakshatra Brands Ltd and Gitanjali Gems Ltd, Mehul Choksi, who is the managing director of Gitanjal Gems Ltd and a guarantor for Nakshatra Brands Ltd, Dhanesh Vrajlal Sheth, director of Nakshatra Brands Ltd, and several others, including public servants, for causing wrongful loss of over Rs 6,000 crores to a consortium of banks.

In the first complaint pertaining to Nakshatra Brands Limited, it was alleged that the jewellery brand is a subsidiary of Gitanjai Gems Ltd and that Nakshtra Brands Ltd is dominantly controlled and managed by Mehul Choksi who was in active connivance with the accused persons named in the FIR.

The jewellery brand and other accused persons, including Choksi, were party to a criminal conspiracy to cheat a consortium of nine member banks led by Punjab National Bank of Rs 807.72 crores between January 21, 2010 to April 1, 2010.

In the second complaint filed by Vijay Kumar Wadhwa against Gitanjali Gems Limited, Mehul Choksi, Dhanesh Vrajial Sheth and several others, it has been alleged that the jewellery brand along with the accused persons, including Choksi, conspired and cheated a consortium of 28 member banks led by ICICI Bank Limited of Rs 5,564.54 crores between April 1, 2010 to January 31, 2018.

Both the complaints state that the jewellery brands and the accused named in the FIR were involved in fudging of accounts, siphoning of funds and utilising the sanctioned credit limits for bogus trade transactions.

Choksi is wanted since January 2018 when he, along with his nephew Nirav Modi, was booked for cheating Punjab National Bank of over Rs 13,000 crores. Since then, multiple other FIRs have been registered against Choksi for bank frauds and cheating consortium of banks.

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