Nirav Modi, the diamond merchant who reportedly scammed Punjab National Bank, is being investigated in India for illegal transfer of Rs12,000 crore. A US court on Thursday ruled in favor of Nirav Modi by passing an interim order which prevents creditors from collecting debts from his company, Firestar Diamond Inc. The US authorities also failed to confirm if he is in the country. Meanwhile, in India, a 58-feet effigy of Nirav Modi was burnt on Holika Dahan in Mumbai.

Reports claim that he deposited Rs 900 million in Punjab National Banks hours before demonetisation in November 2016.

Interest rates hike connected to PNB scam?

Several bank account holders are blaming the government for increasing loan interest rates. Pointing fingers at the BJP government which allegedly favors the likes of Nirav Modi, they said that Punjab National Bank first raised home loan rates. “Recovery of Rs 12000 crore swindled by Nirav Modi starts from common man,” a user tweeted. MP Gaurav Gogoi called for an impartial investigation. “Instead of acting on NiMo and Mehul Bhai, PM Modi and FM Jaitley reduced GST on diamonds to 0.25% in Jan 2018. The #ModiRobsIndia scam gets bigger. Need impartial investigation,” he tweeted. Some reports claim that the diamond merchant contributed Rs 250 crore to the BJP coffers, funded BJP poll ads and social media campaigns.

Meanwhile, in an effort to thwart financial fraud, the central government has passed the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill. Only time will tell if it will stop looters.

Letter mocks government

Nirav Modi’s PNB scam has been a subject of debate for the past two weeks. Memes pertaining to the scam have been going viral on social media.

An anonymous note titled, “An Indian Citizen’s Letter To Nirav Modi,” has also been going viral. The letter, which mocking the Indian government, is addressed to Nirav Modi asks him to “feel happy” and accumulate more wealth.

The letter states: “Don’t worry about the 11,00 crore of debt you owe to Punjab National Bank.

This amount will be collected from us by our banks in small amounts of Rs 50, Rs100 in the guise of ATM charges, annual maintenance charges, minimum balance charges, etc or our government will collect it on the form of “Swatch Bharat cess,” “Krishi Kalyan cess,” education cess, etc.

The letter went on to add a note about Vijay Mallya, a business tycoon who also fled the country and declared bankruptcy.

Meanwhile, the arrest of Karti Chidambaram, son of former finance minister P Chidambaram did not go well with Modi critics. Responding to the former’s arrest, author Chetan Bhagat suggested that this move will do more harm than good to the BJP in the upcoming elections. “Not sure if arresting Karti will send a strong message against corruption, or will it actually highlight Karti belonged to which political side vs which side were Mehul Choksi and Nirav Modi on that they were allowed to leave,” he tweeted.

He also added: “Mallya gave personal guarantees and took loans. Nirav Modi took guarantees for a fee. Both are very different cases. Going after Mallya [is] actually easier than Nirav, who's going to argue what is my fault if the bank is stupid?”

Harsh Goenka, chairman of RPG Enterprises, also added on to the PNB scam joke. “If you link your Aadhar card with your bank account, no point. Your link should be with your bank officials. ~Nirav Modi,” he tweeted.

What Rahul Gandhi says

Rahul Gandhi, Congress party chief, said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi "is actually not against corruption, he IS corruption.....he is the instrument of corruption."

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