As Dominica proclaims Mehul Choksi as a ‘prohibited immigrant’, his lawyer Vijay Aggarwal on Thursday questioned as to why Dominica was denying knowing Choksi’s identity in court, speaking to Republic TV. Aggarwal claimed that Choksi was allegedly abducted to Dominica to be transported to India in a state-sponsored scheme. Maintaining that only a court order could repatriate him to India, he said politicians’ statements do not matter.
Choksi lawyer: ‘Why denying Choksi in court?’
“He who has nobody, has his lawyer. His lawyer will see to it that he remains in Antigua. On 27 May, Choksi was found in Dominica and was identified as Mehul Choski via his driving licence. If on 25th May, they knew he was Mehul Choksi and passed this order, why did they not reveal it to the world immediately? Why have they said that they don’t know Choksi in the court?,” asked Aggarwal.
He added, “This documentation shows, in a state-sponsered scheme, he was picked up in Dominica and was to be transported to India via coastguard in a plane. But the plane reached late. A person can be declared ‘prohibited immigrant’ if he refuses to reveal his identity. Politicians’ statements do not matter. The court order will be supreme”.
Moreover, he maintained that Choksi can only be repatriated to India by using the rule of law. He is well within his rights to accept Antiguan citizenship, said Aggarwal. Commenting on Choki’s ‘friend’ Barbara Jabarica, he asked, “Barbara chooses to surface on a day when the police complaint was filed. There are too many coincidences. How did Mehul Choksi have no luggage when he was found in Dominica?”.
Mehul Choksi labelled ‘prohibited immigrant’
Earlier in the day, Republic TV accessed an order dated 25 May issued by the Dominica govt declaring Mehul Choksi a ‘prohibited immigrant’. The Dominican National Security and Home Affairs ministry has ordered its police to take necessary action to remove Choksi from Dominica as per the procedure. The ministry also told Choksi that he is not allowed to enter Dominica and that the police have been instructed to take all necessary action to have him repatriated.
Mehul Choksi arrested
Mehul Choksi purportedly went “missing” after going out for dinner in Antigua island on May 23 and could not be traced even though his vehicle was traced in the Jolly Harbour later. Following a yellow notice alert, Dominican authorities arrested Choksi for allegedly illegally entering the country via Toucari Beach. While Choksi is seeking to be repatriated to Antigua where he enjoys citizenship, Antigua PM Gaston Browne has now refused to grant him entry in Antigua and asked the Dominican government to directly deport him to India. An eight-member team of the CBI, the ED, and the Ministry of External Affairs had flown to Dominica to pursue the case for Choksi’s deportation, but have now returned to India. Choksi is accused of allegedly siphoning off Rs 13,500 crore of public money from the Punjab National Bank (PNB), using letters of undertaking, and is currently housed in Dominica-China Friendship Hospital under police guard after being denied bail.
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