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Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya may share the same cell if extradited, says Arthur Road jail official

FE Online
nirav modi, vijay mayya, maharashtra

While diamond merchant Nirav Modi continues to languish in a London jail in connection to $2 billion PNB fraud and money laundering case, authorities in Arthur Road jail in Mumbai have kept ‘barrack no. 12’ ready if he is extradited from the UK.

The Maharashtra government has recently sent a letter to the Centre, assuring the later about facilities that it can provide in the prison. Last year too, Maharashtra government had furnished a similar letter to the Centre in connection with the extradition of liquor baron Vijay Mallya, who is also in the UK. Mallya is wanted in the country on charges of fraud and money laundering to tune of Rs 9,000 crore.

In the case of extradition, Nirav Modi will be kept in one of two rooms in barrack no. 12 of the jail, according to news agency PTI. As per a prison official, a maximum of three prisoners can be lodged in one room and that the room in Barrack 12 is currently vacant. He added that in case both Modi and Mallya are extradited, they will be lodged in the same room. The room with an area of 20 feet by 15 feet, is equipped with three fans, six tube lights as well as two windows.

The Scotland Yard arrested Nirav Modi in London on March 19. He faces extradition to India for being the “principal beneficiary” of the fraudulent issuance of letters of undertaking (LoUs) in a conspiracy to defraud the Punjab National Bank (PNB) and then went on laundering the money. Last month, the Westminster Magistrate’s Court denied bail to Nirav Modi.

The prison department has also assured that Nirav Modi will be kept inside a cell where the total number of detainees is more than three. “If lodged in the barrack, Modi is likely to get three square metres personal space, as per European norms, per person lodged in correction centres, and he will be provided a cotton mat, pillow, bed-sheet and blanket,” an official was quoted as saying by PTI.

He further said that Nirav Modi, after being shifted to the jail will be granted permission to be out of his cell for exercise and recreation for a given time, which will not more than an hour every day. He will also get clean drinking water, round-the-clock medical facilities, and toilet and washing facilities, he told the agency further.