An Indian court declared fugitive Indian diamond merchant Nirav Modi as a ‘proclaimed absconder’ in a customs duty evasion case.
The case was registered in March and the court has asked Modi to appear in person on November 15.
A public notice was issued earlier in the day into newspapers and also sent to the government and police departments, where the jeweller was announced proclaimed absconder under section 82 of the Criminal Procedure Code.
The new ruling by the local court in India’s westernmost state Gujarat is expected to make him difficult to secure an anticipatory bail.
The chief magistrate in Surat, BH Kapadia accepted a petition from the country’s customs department on August 8 and asked Modi to appear before the court.
Modi is accused in several other financial criminal cases including Rs 135 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case.
The current case in the Surat court was registered by deputy customs commissioner RK Tiwary against Nirav Modi and three of his companies, Firestar Diamond International Pvt Ltd, Firestar International Pvt Ltd, and Radashir Jewellery Co Pvt Ltd.
Modi moved abroad earlier this year before an alleged multi-billion dollars fraud at state-run Punjab National Bank (PNB) came into light.
India’s federal investigation agency, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has filed a case against him and others for their roles in the PNB fraud case.