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Not enough power to declare Nirav Modi fugitive economic offender: Court

Modi must be tagged as a fugitive before the ED can attach his foreign assets.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Jul 13, 2019, 01.31 PM IST
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Nirav-Modi---BCCL
Nirav Modi (File Pic)
MUMBAI: Attempts by law enforcement agencies to declare wanted diamantaire Nirav Modi a fugitive economic offender were delayed further after a special Mumbai sessions court hearing the matter postponed the case until it is vested with appropriate powers.

In an order on Thursday, special judge UM Mudholkar said courts dealing with such matters must have powers under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and as a designated court for the Central Bureau of Investigation/Anti-Corruption Branch. This court is bestowed only with powers under the PMLA, he said.

“So far as designated powers of this court as CBI/ACB judge are concerned, notification of this court is not received and is awaited. So, in a sense, as on today, this court cannot effectively deal with these matters,” he said.

Modi, in an application filed through senior counsel Vijay Aggarwal, had contended that while the court is a designated court under PMLA, it was not designated under the Prevention of Corruption Act. “In such a situation, passing of any effective order by this court would not be proper,” the judge said. “The notification may come very shortly. Hence, to avoid further complications, passing of the order on this application can be deferred till next date or till receipt of the notification.”

Modi must be tagged as a fugitive economic offender before the Enforcement Directorate can attach his foreign assets.

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