Sunday, 14th July 2024

UK nationals blasts Mehul Choksi kidnap plot, say were in Caribbean for sailing

Sunday, 7th July 2024

London: A Times Now Journalist interviewed two British nationals accused of kidnapping Indian fugitive Mehul Choksi. The media person Jonathan Gilbert said Gurjit Bhandal and Gurmit Singh were at the wrong place at the wrong time, and Mehul Choksi's lawyers misused their presence to divert the attention from reality. Choksi's defence team tried to clutch every straw in the wind, said the Times Now Journalist.

After meeting and interviewing Bhandal and Singh, Jonathan further said that he thinks they are innocent men whom Mehul Choksi's lawyers framed.

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In the interview with the Indian media channel Times Now, Gurjit Bhandal and Gurmeet Singh denied the accusations and said they are being framed.

In the interview, Bhandal and Singh told Jonathan Gilbert that they were in the Caribbean when Mehul Choksi went missing, but they do not have any associations with his disappearance whatsoever. Both accepted of being on the "Calliope of Arne Yacht" and said they hired the boat long before Choksi went missing and said all the conspiracy theories are false with no reality in them.

Answering questions of Times Now Journalist Jonathan Gilbert, Gurjit Bhandal said they left Antigua, and Barbuda on May 23, 2021, at 10 am for their sailing adventures. They told both of them didn't even know who Mehul Choksi was until their name was reflected in the media, relating them to the alleged abduction of the fugitive Choksi.

Ever since getting out of the Dominican jail, Mehul Choksi had been changing his statements. According to the Caribbean media, he also made corrections to the police complaint he filed against a European woman, stating her name was misspelt by him earlier. Now that the new facts and the passport copies are already out in the public domain, Choksi attempted to go with the flow the safeguard himself. Earlier he spelt Babara Jarabica in his police statement in Dominica and later in an personalized interview he said that it was not Babara Jarabica but Barbara Jarabik. [caption id="attachment_36807" align="aligncenter" width="312"]Statement of Mehul Choksi Statement of Mehul Choksi[/caption] Journalist Jonathan Gilbert asked Singh and Bhandal why they were denied entry in April 2021; the duo said the quarantine regulations in Dominica were different back then, and five-day isolation in the boat was mandatory. They said as they were on holiday, they didn't want to waste their time staying on the boat for five days. Both said they went back in May because there were no mandatory quarantine requirements. Following the interview of Gurjit Bhandal and Gurmit Singh on Times Now, WIC NEWS correspondent reached out to Dominican authorities, who said that in April, it was mandatory for all travellers from the bubble to quarantine for five days. Authorities said the limitations were applicable for all sea and air travellers. While in May 2021, the guidelines changed, and only negative RT-PCR test results were mandatory to enter the country.

The paid media of Mehul Choksi had been running stories, alleging that Gurjit Bhandal and Gurmeet Singh were denied entry in Dominica when they first tried to dock in April 2021. However, as per Bhandal and Singh, they left voluntarily and were not denied entry.

An official from the Indian High Commission, London, said that Mehul Choksi is utilizing his illicit money to buy off expensive lawyers and media to influence the court's narrative. He also said that Choksi is attempting to display himself as a "victim" of atrocities.

Nobody other than the lawyers and London based journalist Ashis Ray are believing the stories of Mehul Choksi. Ray had been widely peddling the fake and conspiracy theories of Mehul Choksi into the media to divert the attention from the actual case and make the fugitive look like a victim to the Indian and Antiguan agencies.

On May 23, 2021, Mehul Choksi mysteriously disappeared from Jolly Harbour, Antigua and Barbuda. His family told the police that he had gone for dinner with some friend, but his close ally Govin told a different story to the media. Govin said Mehul Choksi escaped for Cuba, fearing the impending criminal charges on him. He also told the media that Choksi owns a safe house in Cuba, hiding from the police and Indian officials.

Two days after getting missing, Mehul Choksi was captured from a beach in Roseau, Dominica, where the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) arrested him for illegally entering the island. After more than a month, the local court in Dominica granted him bail on July 15 2021, on medical grounds. Court ordered that Choksi must return to Dominica after his medical treatment completes.

Why is Mehul Choksi called a fugitive?

Mehul Choksi took a $2 billion loan from Punjab National Bank, India's second-biggest public lender, on the name of his "Geetanjali Jewellers". The loan was taken by unlawful means, and Choksi couldn't pay it back. In February 2018, a first police report was registered against him, but he had already taken citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda in 2017 and had moved there permanently. Until the end of February 2018, his lawyers continue to say that he could not come to court hearings because of his ongoing medical treatment in a foreign country.

After failing to attend the court hearings, the Indian courts declared him a "fugitive" who ran with the people's money. Criminal Investigation Bureau (CBI) of India believes that with all the money and power, Choksi was aware of the impending charges against him and left the country before a police complaint was registered. Even INTERPOL has a "red corner" notice issued against his name.

Click here to see full interview