New Delhi, June 18: Enforcement Directorate officials who are probing the Lalit Modi case say that there is no threat to his life and this will not stand in the way of them pursusing the investigation.
An officer with the Enforcement Directorate told OneIndia that the threat perception does not exist and in fact has not been there since the year 2010.
The ED says that the probe would be stepped up now. As a first measure there will be a red corner notice that would be issued. Under a blue corner notice it is difficult to probe a person. As per the clause in a blue corner notice, only the identification of a person can be sought.
However in a red corner notice, the person in question can be investigated/charged and also extradited if relevant proof is submitted to the country where he or she is staying.
Lalit Modi cited threats only to dodge probe:
The Enforcement Directorate says that there should be no problem in bringing him down to India. The ED in one of its documents clearly states that Lalit Modi is making a ground to avoid investigation. He has been citing the security threat to stay away from India, the ED also points out.
Intelligence Bureau officials who do the threat assessment had pointed out that he had a threat from the underworld in the year 2009 and 2010.
These were extortion threats, but after 2011 the threat perception had been downgraded and even his security had been withdrawn.
The IB also adds that there is no provision that states that a person shall stay away from the country if there is a threat perception.
Lalit Modi had however continued to cite security threat as one of the main reasons to stay out of the country.
He even appointed a private firm from Singapore to do his security threat assessment. The private firm which charges a huge amount of money had given a report stating that Lalit Modi was under threat.
The ED says that the documents relating to his security and other issues will be used to seek his extradition. There is an urgent need to question him and it needs to be done in India, the officer pointed out.
The ED is working out some formalities such as the red corner notice before it could question Lalit Modi. A notice directing him to join the probe in India would be sent.
The cases of the ED against Lalit Modi:
The main cases against the former IPL Chairman, Lalit Modi is under the Foreign Exchange Management Act. The ED has issued a show cause notice seeking an explanation of violations to the tune of Rs 89 crore.
In his explanation, Lalit Modi says that this question should be posed to N Srinivasan who was the treasurer of the BCCI at that time. He further said that the IPL was only a sub-committee of the BCCI and hence all decisions would be taken by the treasurer of the board.
The second showcause notice issued by the ED as relating to a deposit of Rs 20 crore from the Emerging Media Group. The third notice seeks an explanation about a payment of Rs 243 crore to Cricket South Africa in the year 2009.
Among the other cases probed by the ED are the payment of 80 million US dollars by the Multi Screen Media to the World Sports Group.
It was alleged that the sum was paid to withdraw the telecast rights contract. The ED is probing if 25 million dollars from the 80 million dollars was routed into an account belonging to Lalit Modi.