The ongoing extradition process of Vijay Mallya may fail as the British court currently hearing the case of embattled liquor baron Vijay Mallya has rejected two extradition requests by the Indian authorities in recent weeks.
Extradition of two Indians halted, Will Vijay Mallya be Next?
UK-based alleged bookie Sanjeev Kumar Chawla got the decision in his favor by The Judges at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London ruled on October 16. A similar fraud case was discharged against a British Indian couple, Jatinder and Asha Rani Angurala, on October 12.
Eminent lawyer Rebecca Crane who is fighting the case against for Chawla, the key accused in the cricket match-fixing scandal involving former South African captain Hanse Cronje in 2000, fought the entire case on the grounds of human rights stating that the conditions in Tihar Jail in Delhi were unhygienic where he was to be held after being extradited.
According to the judge, she was more than satisfied with the prima facie case against Chawla over his role in the fixing of “cricket matches played between India and South Africa during the tour of the South African Cricket Team to India under the captainship of the late Hansie Cronje in February-March 2000”.
Dr. Alan Mitchell, a licensed medical practitioner and a former medical officer at a Scottish prison, proved to be the decisive factor as the judge ruled the decision in favor of Chawla simply on the grounds that his human rights would be violated in Tihar Jail under Section 87, Article 3 relating to “prohibition of torture, or inhuman or degrading treatment”.
“(There are) strong grounds for believing that the RP (Requested Person: Chawla) would be subjected to torture or inhuman & degrading treatment or punishment in the Tihar prison complex, due to the overcrowding, lack of medical provision, risk of being subjected to torture and violence either from other inmates or prison staff which is endemic in Tihar,” Judge Crane noted in her judgment.
In the case of the Anguralas, Emma Arbuthnot, senior district judge who is also presiding over the Mallya case – ruled that it would be extremely unjust to extradite them after nearly a quarter of a century since the fraud took place when the accused (Jatinder) was a branch manager with the Bank of India in Jalandhar.
The Anguralas committed a major fraud between the time period of 1990 and 1993 against the public sector bank, causing a total loss of about 24,000 pounds.
Jatinder Angurala allegedly sanctioned the loans to himself, his wife and co-conspirators during the period between 1990 and 1993 by fraudulent means. He later confessed about the irregularities and promised to repay all the money but did not repay all the money.
The couple, who are now holding a British passport, was arrested at a shop owned by them in south-east London and remained on conditional bail since then. The judge was critical of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for considerable delays in the case and for failure to arrest the accused years ago despite being aware of a series of addresses associated with them.
“I find I am not sure he is a fugitive and his extradition is barred by reason of the passage of time as I find it would be unjust and oppressive to extradite him by reason of the quarter century that has passed since the alleged offense,” Judge Arbuthnot said in reference to Jatinder.
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